By Keri White
We recently had a houseguest whose spouse is on a low-salt diet for health reasons. I asked him about his dietary preferences for his visit, and he said, semi-jokingly, “When I’m away, I’m on a high-salt diet!”
Obviously, I didn’t want to serve up high blood pressure with dinner, but I did focus on ingredients that he probably can’t have at home — things like soy and miso, which are delicious but do have a fair share of salt.
Because we were at the beach, I also wanted to offer some fish.
Tilefish is a delicious variety that worked beautifully with this meal — but any firm fish like grouper, halibut, cod, salmon, haddock or tilapia would be a fine substitute. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time for the fish; the tilefish was about an inch thick, but as a thinner filet, tilapia would require less cooking time.
We served this with sushi rice, which is a bit sticky and has a different texture from regular rice. The sauce coated it well, and the rice rounded out the meal nicely. If sushi rice is not convenient, any type of rice or noodle would be enjoyable with this dinner.
Soy-ginger glazed fish
The glaze can be made a day ahead and stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator. If you use this method, the fish will need an extra 10 minutes in the oven to compensate for the cold glaze. The hot glaze poured right from the skillet accelerates the cooking process.
1½ pounds tilefish or other fillet
1 teaspoon canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1-inch piece ginger, grated
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon chopped chili pepper or 1 teaspoon hot sauce like Sriracha
Juice of 1 lime
1 tablespoon sesame oil
¼ cup water
¼ cup soy
Heat your oven to 275 F.
In a large skillet over medium, heat the canola oil, and saute the onion, garlic, chilies and ginger until fragrant and soft, about five minutes. Add the soy, sesame, water and lime juice, and toss the lime rinds in as well. Cook over low until the sauce thickens, about eight minutes.
While the sauce simmers, place the fish in a baking dish with a cover. Remove the lime rinds, pour the sauce over the fish and bake, covered, for 20 minutes, or until the fish is opaque throughout and flakes easily. Serve immediately.
Salad with miso dressing
This simple salad was a hit and complements the fish nicely. It would also be nice as a bed for grilled salmon, tuna, chicken or flank steak.
I used the micro sprouts and pea shoots that I found at my local farmers market, but if you can’t find them, just add an extra cup of greens.
6 cups baby greens (spring mix, arugula, mache or tatsoi)
½ cup microgreens sprouts such as broccoli or radish sprouts
1 cup pea shoots
1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 cup cherry tomatoes
1 carrot, grated
1 scallion, white and green parts, chopped
For the dressing:
¼ cup miso (any type)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon honey
2 teaspoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
Place all the salad ingredients in a large, shallow bowl. Mix the ingredients well, making sure to break up the miso, and thoroughly blend to an even consistency, either with a fork or a blender. Toss it over the salad just before serving.