Teriyaki Salmon -- with Gluten-Free Option


Teriyaki Salmon -- with Gluten-Free Option


Teriyaki, a traditional Japanese cooking method primarily used for fish, literally means shiny and grilled or broiled. In other Asian countries, similar methods, though with other names, are also used and are applied to chicken and pork in addition to fish.


Here’s the way I have been making teriyaki, primarily with salmon and roasting it in the oven, for some years at our restaurant. We’ve prepared it mostly for catering, using one or more whole salmon fillets, which makes an attractive party dish. (The same marinade can be used for boneless, skinless chicken thighs, which can be cooked on the grill or griddle.)


Soy sauce is essential for the teriyaki seasoning. A Japanese soy (such as Kikkoman, which is readily available in the US) or Korean soy have the appropriate flavor. Most soy sauces include wheat, and therefore gluten, in their fermentation process. People who must avoid gluten can get a gluten-free equivalent sauce, such as a Japanese “tamari,” which also gives the right flavor.


The recipe serves four, accompanied by rice and a stir-fried vegetable. The fish can be served hot for dinner, or at room temperature as part of an appetizer buffet.


1 pound piece of salmon fillet

2 tablespoons soy sauce, preferably Japanese or Korean, or gluten-free tamari

1-1/2 teaspoons sweet rice wine or “Mirin” (substitute is dry Sherry)

1 teaspoon rice vinegar or white vinegar

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon cornstarch

3/8 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

1/4 teaspoon Asian sesame oil

1 teaspoon canola or sunflower oil

Some thinly sliced green onion tops or chives for garnish


Wipe the salmon piece with paper towel. If the salmon still has skin on it, remove it by placing the salmon skin side down on a cutting board and with a sharp knife cutting a quarter inch into one end of the fish between the skin and the flesh. Then holding the skin down with your fingertips, slice along the skin to free the flesh from the skin.


Combine the remaining ingredients, aside from the green onion or chives for the garnish, and stir well. Marinate the fish in a flat-bottomed container for several hours, occasionally lifting the fish a little to get marinade under it and spooning marinade over the top.


Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Place the salmon on a baking sheet. Drizzle a little of the marinade over the salmon and discard remaining marinade. Roast 14 minutes on an upper rack. If the surface is looking cooked, test by sticking the tip of a small sharp knife into the fish with the “grain” and twist the knife gently to see if the raw color is almost gone. If not, roast another 2 minutes and test again. Do not overcook.


Teriyaki salmon can be eaten hot or cold. Platter the fish and sprinkle lightly with sliced green onion top or chives.

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