Thursday, April 24, 2014

Sweet & Sour Salmon 酸甜鲑鱼/三文鱼

How do you make a dish "sweet and sour" similar to Sweet and Sour Pork or Plum Sauce Chicken, or Orange Chicken, or Lemon Chicken?

In this recipe, the "sweet and sour" essence is created by fresh tomatoes, caramelized onions, hint of brown sugar in soy-based sauce, finished off with a little black vinegar. Many times, this has been my simple way to cook fresh whole fish such as tilapia and yellow croaker - sweet-sour style.

Today, I am giving this sweet-sour spin to the salmon fillet, and make an entire meal out of it, in a skillet.

Sweet and Sour Salmon 酸甜鲑鱼/三文鱼
In a pan, aromatize 2 tbsp roughly chopped onions and 3 thin slices of ginger. Then add 1-2 cloves thinly sliced garlic, and 1/2 medium-sized tomato that has been diced, fry and mix well.

When tomatoes start to soften and start to release their juices, add 2 tsp of soy sauce, some water (about 1 cup) and allow the mixture to come to simmer. Pinch of brown sugar and dash of white pepper to the simmering sauce. This will be the "poaching liquid" to cook the salmon fillet.

Add the salmon fillet, turn the heat to low-medium and allow the salmon to simmer and cook in the sauce-liquid for 10 minutes or more, depending on thickness and size of salmon fillet. At about the last 2-3 minutes towards end of cooking,  add 2-3 drops of black vinegar to the sauce, and finish cooking the dish. Turn off heat and add 2-3 drops of toasted sesame oil for aroma.

To make it a complete meal, what would you have done? A bowl of steamed rice + some steamed veggies?

As I wanted to use one skillet (therefore minimize the washing of dishes), I cooked some pasta and finish the cooking in the sweet-sour sauce (the pasta will absorb all the goody sauce too!), then towards the end of cooking, add in greens that will wilt and be cooked in the cooking steam.

If you are going meatless (vegetarian), try making this Sweet and Sour Tofu, pair it with rice, pasta or noodles, top it with some steamed, blanched or roasted vegetables. It will be as tasty, healthy, and nutritious.

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