This Chinese-inspired Thai baked salmon is gourmet-delicious, yet extremely easy to make. You'll love how the rich-tasting black bean sauce enhances the exquisite flavor of the salmon. This simple recipe also works with other types of fish as well, such as cod, sole, snapper, or halibut. This easy Thai recipe is superb for everyday meals, but also wonderful enough to serve to a taste-discerning crowd.
- 2 to 3 salmon steaks or fillets, fresh or frozen, or another type of fish, such as cod, sole, snapper, halibut, etc.
- For the Black Bean Sauce:
- 1/3 cup chicken stock
- 2 tbsp. prepared black bean sauce, or black bean garlic sauce (available by the jar at Asian/Chinese food stores)
- 2 tbsp. sherry or cooking sherry
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 thumb-size piece galangal or fresh ginger, grated
- 1 tbsp. lime juice
- 1 tbsp. fish sauce (available in tall bottles at Asian/Chinese food stores)
- 1 tbsp. brown sugar or 1 tsp. white sugar
- 1 to 2 fresh red chilies, minced, or 1/3 to 1/2 tbsp. dried crushed chili (from the spice aisle)
- For the Topping:
- Handful of fresh coriander
- 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
- Drizzle of sesame oil
Preheat oven to 350 F.
If using frozen fish, quickly thaw by floating the fish packet in a bowl or sink of tepid water. If using fresh fish, briefly rinse it and pat dry. Place fish in a covered, flat-bottomed baking dish. Set aside.
Combine all 'Black Bean Sauce' ingredients together, stirring well to dissolve the sugar. Pour sauce over fish. Turn the fish once or twice so that it is saturated with sauce. You can either cover fish and leave to marinate OR bake right away.
Cover and bake (at 350 F) for 15 to 20 minutes (12 to 14 for thinner fillets, 15 to 20 for steaks), or until the inner flesh has turned firm and opaque (no longer translucent). Avoid over-cooking or the salmon will lose its natural succulence.
When fish is cooked, taste-test it with the sauce. (Taste Tip: The sauce should taste on the salty and spicy side, then when it's eaten with the fish and rice it'll be perfect.) Note that the saltiness of the sauce will depend on the type of stock you used. If not salty or flavorful enough, add another 1/2 to 1 tbsp. fish sauce. If too salty, add a squeeze of lime or lemon juice. Add more chili if you'd like it spicier, or more sugar as desired.
Portion the fish out onto individual plates. Top with some of the black bean sauce from the baking dish plus a sprinkling of spring onion and fresh coriander. Drizzle with a little sesame oil and serve with rice and more of the black bean sauce on the side.