Honey Salmon with asparagus and rice is one of the recipes that I love to cook when I think about fish. It’s one of those plates that I prepare with anticipation in my head from the moment I select the fish at the fish market or grocery store. Ask the fisherman for a fresh and wild piece of salmon. If choosing from the counter on a grocery store, check the date when it was prepared but more importantly look for a salmon that looks fresh. Look for the one that shows a great salmon colour (pink) rather than the dull pink fading to white – although it might be edible, dull colour is a sure sign that it’s not that fresh.
I usually prefer wild rice but didn’t have any, so I went with whole grain brown rice. For extra crispiness, leave the rice on the heat for a few minutes after the water is gone.
This recipe is straightforward: mix all ingredients and cook. However, you can marinate the salmon in advance if you want to incorporate more flavour; just leave the lemon out until you cook it. Adding lemon to the marinade will change the properties of the fish and “cook it”. Only two special considerations must be taken when cooking this recipe: start cooking the asparagus and the salmon when the rice is almost done, and add the honey to the frying pan after all the other ingredients.
It doesn’t matter if you’re eating alone or if you have guests. After all the time invested in making a meal why don’t spend a few minutes on plating? It will make your dishes stand out and your guests happier. Try to make them look good. Keep towels handy in case you need to clean the plate, and if it doesn’t work you can always try again. Practice, practice & practice. You’ll become an expert.
We shared an article this week on our Facebook Page giving tips on food presentation. This plate will give you the opportunity to put those 4 tips into practice. It has contrasting & colourful ingredients like salmon and asparagus, with colours that are opposite on the colour wheel; the rice adds a crispy texture.
Tip: have all your ingredients handy and organized. It will save you time, you’re less likely to forget any ingredients, and your cooking area will be cleaner – making your life easier.
To start cooking the salmon, carefully remove the skin (if any) and dice it into even squares. Use a fish knife or a chef’s knife. Make sure they are always sharp, and remove the skin slowly while you do it. Enjoy the process.
Start cooking the rice. Remember 2 1/2 cups of water for each cup of brown rice. Add one garlic clove for flavour. Set the temperature to high and when the water starts boiling, reduce it to medium-low.
While the race is cooking add the lemon juice, red pepper flakes, salt, olive oil, soy sauce to the salmon and let it marinate for at least a few minutes (it works better if you let it marinate in the sauce for up to 12 hours). Break the tough ends off the asparagus spear; we explain how in our Phyllo wrapped asparagus recipe.
When your rice is almost done, you can start cooking the salmon. Heat a pan at high-medium temperature and throw the salmon in. Don’t stir too frequently or the salmon will break. Let it sit for 2min before stirring it. Repeat the stir until all the salmon is “sealed” (crispy on the outside).
Add the honey to the frying pan and let it work its magic. At the beginning you will see the typical yellow of the honey and lots of bubbles.
Drop down the temperature and let it sit uncovered on the frying pan until the honey gets dark brown. Remove from the heat and let it rest while you finish your plate. Honey is going to be extremely hot.
While the honey is simmering cook the asparagus. It will only take 5min. Add a little bit of water to a small frying pan or a sauce pan, enough to cover half the asparagus not enough to drown them. Bring the water to a boil. Add some salt and add the asparagus. The salt will bring out the beautiful green of the asparagus.
Finish your meal with grace. Decorate your plate. Set the rice on the bottom, then the asparagus and top all that with the salmon. Add some honey to the plate for decoration and flavour too. You can get a nice round stack of rice by cutting the bottom off a tuna can and placing it around the rice as you spoon it onto the plate. Lift off the can, and the rice should keep its shape.
Finally, set the mood for your guests. Light some candles, turn on some music, turn off all your mobile devices and TV and enjoy the meal
- 1 piece of Salmon
- ½ lemon squeezed
- ½ tablespoon olive oil
- ½ tablespoon red pepper flakes
- ¼ tablespoon salt
- ½ tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon honey
- Cut the skin from the salmon (if any) and dice it into even squares.
- Add the lemon juice, red pepper flakes, salt, olive oil, soy sauce and salmon to a small dish and let it marinate for a few minutes (it works better if you let it marinate for up to 12 hours).
- Heat a pan at high-medium temperature and throw the salmon in. Don't stir too frequently or the salmon will break. Let it sit for 2min before stirring it. Repeat until all the salmon is "sealed" (crispy on the outside).
- Add the honey to the frying pan, turn to low heat and let it work its magic. It's done when the honey gets dark brown.
- Remove from the pan and serve with rice & asparagus.