Teriyaki is just one of those lovely sauces that elevate any fish, chicken or beef to something special.
And it's pretty simple, making it a great weekday option, but equally impressive when you have company!
PREP TIME: 10 min
COOK TIME: 10-12 min
FOR THE 'BASIC' TERIYAKI SAUCE
½ cup (120 ml) dark sesame oil
2 TBSP (30 ml) soy sauce
1 TBSP (15 ml) mirin (sweet rice wine vinegar) or sushi vinegar
3-4 tsp (15-20 ml) honey (increase if you like a sweeter sauce)
2 tsp Dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 tsp crushed red pepper (adjust to your personal heat/spicy preference)
FOR THE SALMON
4 pieces of salmon (roughly 175 g each)
Salt and pepper for seasoning
Vegetable oil or coconut oil for searing
Red bell pepper, finely sliced
1) Preheat oven to 350F / 180C.
2) In a small bowl, whisk together all of the teriyaki ingredients and set aside.
3) Season the top side of the salmon with salt and pepper
4) Heat a pan on med-high heat, add a bit of vegetable or coconut oil to the pan and sear the salmon (top side down) for 2-3 minutes, till golden.
5) Remove the salmon from the pan and place in an oven-proof baking dish, top side up.
6) Add the teriyaki sauce to the hot pan and cook for 1 minute to reduce down a bit, stirring constantly.
7) Pour the sauce over the salmon and place the salmon in the preheated oven for 8-10 minutes, until the white protein starts to bubble and leak out the sides.
8) OPTIONAL GARNISH: while the salmon cooks, add a bit more oil to the pan and sauté the thin bell pepper slices over medium heat for 5-7 minutes, till softened and slightly browned.
Move salmon to individual serving plates, spoon over a bit of the sauce from the backing dish and top with the sautéed bell pepper slivers. Pairs well with brown rice and broccoli stems
Recipe & Photo Credit: Cathy Menees
ADJUSTING TO TASTE
GARLIC: I love it, so I sometimes add 2 more cloves to the sauce for this dish. Call me crazy.
SWEETNESS: Teriyaki sauce is a sweet sauce, but if you’re one of the people who is put off by sweet sauces, then just reduce the honey to your tastes. Or use a white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar instead of Mirin and balance to your own tastes. That said, if you're trying to get kids to try/like salmon, then keep it sweet for now and back off as they get older.
HEAT/SPICE: Crushed red chili flakes are not a typical teriyaki ingredient, but I love the zip they add. Adjust as needed for your own personal heat preference.
Go for wild salmon whenever you can, and make sure it's sourced from a sustainable supplier.
Mirin is a type of sweet rice wine that is a staple Japanese cooking. I keep it in my pantry as I use it a lot in various Asian cuisines. If you don’t have it on hand, just use a 1 TBSP of a white vinegar or apple cider vinegar, but then add another 1 tsp of honey to make up for the lost sweetness inherent in Mirin.
This will vary by the thickness of your salmon filets. The best test of ‘doneness’ for salmon is when the white protein starts to bubble and leak out the sides (see photo). Before that, it’s under cooked. After that, it’s dry. So be watchful. You’ll get a feeling for it the more you do it!