Aguachile de Salmón
Aguachile is just one of many styles of Mexican ceviche. Hailing from the State of Sinaloa, it is traditionally made with raw shrimp, cucumber, onion, lime juice, and fresh chile peppers.
The name “chile-water” comes from the method of mashing chiles with water to make the salsa. Often served as a snack or appetizer, it is usually accompanied by avocado and tostadas.
Here, this vibrant, tangy, refreshing appetizer is made with sushi-grade Southeast Alaska Coho Salmon. Coho’s pleasant mild flavor benefits from lots of jazzy toppings. Coho is a wonderful species of salmon for aguachile – the flavor is enhanced by the salsa and olive oil, the texture pairs great with crispy tostadas, it’s not too fishy, and has broad appeal. (We save expensive King salmon for special meals, and save deep-red Sockeye species for beautiful sashimi). Coho is simply perfect here…
Aguachile de Salmón Coho Recipe
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Salmon Sashimi, Dry Ice Display
Our monthly seafood subscription from Alaska arrives in a smart environmentally responsible box. Shipped to us in Las Vegas, the fillets have always been rock-hard and frozen-solid due to the great packaging using -110°F dry ice.
When the box arrives, it always has a few small slabs of dry ice still intact. It was fun to use the remaining dry ice to present a piece of the fabulous Alaska sockeye salmon served sashimi style.
Sockeye Salmon Sashimi
Garlic, Shallot, Olive Oil
Chili Crunch, Edamame, Tamari, Lemon
Smoked Maldon Sea Salt Flakes
Since dry ice must be used soon after delivery, defrost a beautiful piece of sockeye using the “quick-thaw” method.
Remove skin and pin bones from the salmon and slice sashimi style. Arrange on a piece of slate chosen to fit over the dry ice display. Serve with chili crunch, edamame, and tamari in small bowls on the side. Also place lemon wedges and smoked Maldon sea salt flakes for serving, on the platter.
Finally, when ready to display, drizzle olive oil down the middle of the salmon and top with thinly sliced shallot and minced garlic. Orchids make a nice presentation too, while edible, they are here mainly for show.
Dry Ice Display
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Sockeye Salmon Crudo, Two Ways
The bright red-orange color of sockeye salmon flesh comes from eating plankton and krill while they are in the ocean. Fans of wild Alaska salmon appreciate the sockeye variety for its deep rich flavor, delightful fatty texture, and gorgeous striking color.
I recently joined a community supported fishery, where we share in the catch of Alaskan small-boat fishermen using low-impact gear that respects the ocean and its sea life. This month we received a box of Sockeye Salmon with fish from both Prince William Sound and Bristol Bay.
The dense, firm flesh makes sockeye a great fish for serving raw. And because it’s blast-frozen, Sitka Salmon is all sashimi-grade. They say, “The on-boat standards our fishermen follow, short boat trips, and individual handling of our fish ensures the quality demanded by any raw preparation. But it’s the blast-freezing process that kills parasites that could be in the fish, which would otherwise be killed by heat in cooking.”
Alaskan Sockeye Salmon Crudo Recipes
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Fluke, Cucumber, Candied Orange
Thai Chili, Scallion, Olive Oil, Lemon
There is beauty and simplicity in this raw dish. It is a balancing act of sweet and savory, fiery chili and chilly fluke, white fish and colorful accompaniments, rich buttery oil and sour lemon juice, crunchy cucumber and chewy candied orange.
A member of the flounder family – fluke has a clean, delicate, fresh taste that is excellent served raw with olive oil and citrus juice. Candied orange slices bring a sweet-tart unexpected counterbalance to the dish.
Fluke Crudo Recipe
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Fluke Crudo, Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette
Dragon Fruit, Meyer Lemon, Parsley, Mint, Borage
Our fluke crudo with Korean picked radish, nasturtium, and gochugaru vinaigrette was such a hit, we had to share another. A member of the flounder family, fluke has a clean, delicate, fresh taste that is excellent served raw (known as hirame sushi). While dragon fruit also has a mild flavor, it has unique visual appeal, esoteric charm, and a cool name. The taste is enhanced by the delightful Meyer lemon sweet-tart vinaigrette. Together, fluke and dragon fruit make a stunning raw dish.
Borage, my favorite edible flower, is very versatile as a garnish due to the light cucumbery flavor that can be paired with either sweet or savory dishes. And the striking blue color and star shape make every dish pop. Borage grows like a weed in my Southern California garden. I simply sprinkle seeds in a sunny spot, water regularly, et voilà!
Meyer lemon rinds are soft and edible. This lemon’s texture and lemony-orange flavor pairs wonderfully with the fresh fish. Cold fish and warm weather – an uncomplicated dish with fresh ingredients is simple, harmonious, and spring-pretty.
Fluke Crudo, Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette Recipe
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