I could live on this. It's so easy and yet utterly beautiful looking, I always feel better after eating it. The pickled vegetables are a great thing to know about. Make extra and keep them in the refrigerator for eating at lunch. You can make this dish with mackerel and chicken breasts, too (chicken needs to be cooked for 20 minutes).
For the salmon:
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons mirin
1 tablespoon dry sherry
4 (4 1/2 oz) salmon fillets
2 teaspoons black sesame seeds
For the vegetables:
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon superfine sugar
1/2 cucumber, halved and seeded
2 small carrots, peeled
4 radishes, trimmed and cut into wafer-thin slices
1/3 daikon radish, peeled
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon pickled ginger (plus whatever liquid clings to it)
1/4 cup microgreens
For the salmon, mix the soy sauce, sugar, mirin, and sherry and stir to dissolve the sugar. Put the fish in the marinade, turn to coat, cover, and put in the refrigerator to marinate for 30 minutes.
To make the vegetables, heat the vinegar and stir in the sugar until it dissolves. Set aside to cool. (Or, if you are in a hurry, you can just whisk together the vinegar and sugar in a bowl until the sugar has dissolved.) Keeping them separate, cut the cucumber, carrots, radishes, and mooli into matchsticks, each about 2 inches long. Sprinkle the salt on the cucumber and put it into a colander for 10 minutes, Rinse and pat dry, then add all the vegetables to the vinegar mixture and toss to combine.
When you're ready to cook the fish, preheat the oven to 350°F. Bake the salmon, in its marinade, for 12 minutes; it will remain moist and only just cooked in the middle. Sprinkle with the black sesame seeds. Add the pickled ginger and microgreens to the vegetables, toss, and serve with the salmon. Offer rice on the side.
From A Change of Appetite by Diana Henry, Mitchell Beazley 2014, photo Laura Edwards.
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