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I was watching a documentary from the Aberdeen fish market in Hong Kong, thoroughly consumed by envy. The abundance and the freshness of the fish were impressive of course, but the size of the place in a city where space is at an exorbitant premium showed what a key produce fish is and should be. And here? Forget about it. Perhaps with the exception of the Billingsgate market in London, we are not spoilt for choice in inland UK.
Ah well, I thought at the end. At least I can cook my fish like they did in the documentary. Of course – stir fry it.
I don't think I'd done it before though - stir fry fish I mean, perhaps with the exception of monkfish which is sturdy enough to survive brutal tossing about in a wok. I was a bit worried that my nice bit of salmon I had my mind set on this time would disintegrate. So I had to watch that bit of the documentary again. How did they do it? Below's how – just leave it alone for a while, then turn and that’s it. Ginger, lemon and I just threw some green veg in, the lemon idea borrowed off Ken Hom.
stir-fried salmonServings: 2Time: 40 minutes
- 2 large skinless salmon fillet
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 broccoli stalks (never throw away the stalks, they're brilliant in stir-fries)
- 1 medium sized pak choi
- 5 tbsp. groundnut oil
- 1 tbsp. oyster sauce
- 2 cm piece of fresh ginger, chopped into thin matchsticks
- 2 tsp palm sugar
- zest grated from 1 lemon
- 1 lemon cut into segments
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- salt and black pepper
1. Slice the salmon fillets into 1 inch thick chunks or strips. Sprinkle them with salt and leave for 20 minutes, then wipe off the salt and dry the pieces thoroughly with paper towels.
2. Cut the broccoli stalks into thick matchsticks and chop the pak choi.
3. Heat up a wok until smoking, add 3 tbsp. of the groundnut oil, turn the heat down to medium and add the salmon pieces. Fry them for a minute without moving them around, then turn them over gently and brown on the other side. Fish them out with a slotted spoon and place on paper towels to drain the oil.
4. Wipe the wok clean and heat it up again. Add 1 tbsp. groundnut oil and add the broccoli and pak choi. Stir fry them on high heat for a few minutes.
5. In the meantime place another pan or skillet over minimum heat and pour in the oyster sauce. When the vegetables start to look cooked, transfer them to the pan with the oyster sauce and keep on very low heat to keep them warm.
6. Turn the heat under the wok down and add the rest of the groundnut oil. Add the ginger and stir fry for a few seconds, then stir in the sugar, zest and the lemon pieces. It will bubble immediately.
7. Return the salmon to the wok and stir gently to coat in the sauce and to warm it up – take care not to break the pieces. Spoon the green veg onto plates and place the salmon on top of the veg. Serve straight away.