Yesterday was the second 12 hour opening of the Copper River Season, from 7 AM to 7 PM up in Alaska. We’re fortunate in Seattle to get the direct flights loaded up with the finest fish, and this morning’s batch was spectacular.

The second opening gave us a fair amount of fish, and the sockeyes look awesome. You’re not going to get a fresher fish anywhere in the country unless you go catch it yourself.  Moreover, the Alaskan Salmon Fishing Industry has been evaluated and certified sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council, an independent Third Party who monitors catch limits, methods of fishing, and environmental concerns surrounding commercial operations. Read more about it on their website, with a link at the end of this post.

With that being said, the price is already starting to drop. Where it started off at a price of $29.99/lb for pretty much everyone in the market here, the price for the second opening has already seen a drop of Five dollars per pound. Start getting your grills ready, because it’s going to come in quick, and it’s going to be great.

Soy-Miso Marinated Salmon with Green Bean Salad

2 lbs. Copper River Sockeye Salmon Fillet

2 TBSP White Miso Paste

2 TBSP Soy Sauce

2 TBSP Rice Vinegar

1 TBSP Brown Sugar

1/4 c. Canola Oil

2 tsp. Sesame Seeds

1 Squirt Wasabi paste

Green Bean Salad

1 Handful green beans, trimmed.

1 box cherry tomatoes, halved

1 TBSP White Miso

1 TBSP Mayonnaise

Splash of soy sauce

Splash of rice vinegar

1 finger fresh grated ginger

2 cloves minced garlic

sesame seeds

1 green onion, sliced diagonally, thin

For the Salmon: Take all the ingredients for the marinade, aside from the sesame seeds, and whisk together. Put your salmon fillet, either whole or cut into four pieces, in the marinade, and let it sit for at least a half an hour. Before you put it in the oven, it should have a dark, caramel color on the surface, and the marinade should just be penetrating towards the center of the fish. As a note, pat the surface relatively dry before you put it in the oven, as excess marinade will burn.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

For the green beans, get a pot of salted water to a boil, and throw the beans in until they get nice and green, about two minutes. They should still be a little crunchy, but after you pull them out, run them under cool water until they stop steaming.

For the dressing, just whisk all the ingredients together. It’s simple, fast, and delicious. (It’s also very healthy, shhhhhh!)

Add the tomatoes. Toss it with the dressing. Instant Salad.

For the salmon, place it Skin side UP in a baking dish, and put it in your preheated oven for about six to eight minutes. The skin should be nice and crispy, and as a chef’s hint, if you take the back of a knife and wick away any excess moisture, that’ll help it along. For added technique and a nice presentation, make some light diagonal slashes in the skin with a knife, as if you were making slashes in a loaf of french bread before baking.

Here’s the big secret to finding out if your fish is done: Take a fork, stick the tines in the fish, and wiggle it around. If it flakes, it’s done. On the sides, you should see the fat starting to sweat out the sides. That means it’s perfect. The marinade will keep it moist, and you’ll end up with a great dinner.  Slice a little bit of green onion and garnish over top for a fresh finish.

Serve it with some steamed jasmine rice, or get a quick box of couscous at the store, and you have a healthy, well rounded meal that is excellent, filling, and a taste of where we call home.

Marine Stewardship Council: http://www.msc.org/track-a-fishery/certified/pacific/alaska-salmon/alaska-salmon-1

 

 

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