This is one of my new favorites: it is so, so easy to make, it's absolutely delicious, and it's good for you too. Full of omega-3s and low in mercury, salmon is also a sustainable choice if you buy wild-caught from Alaska or Washington State. I usually don't mess around with salmon too much - it's plenty flavorful on its own - but I wanted to step my game up a bit and this marinade, adapted from simplyrecipes.com, comes together in seconds with a big flavor payoff.
To make the marinade:
Combine 1/2 cup sake, 1/2 cup mirin, and 1/2 cup of soy sauce with 1 tablespoon minced garlic, 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger, 1/4 cup white sugar and a dash of red chili flakes.
Cover one pound of salmon with the marinade (either in a freezer bag or a sealed Tupperware) and place in fridge for one hour.
To make this a complete meal, I used this time to cook my quinoa, replacing half the cooking water with low-sodium chicken broth for extra flavor.
When you're ready to cook, pour the marinade into a small sauce pan and bring to a boil, then reduce heat (do this carefully - mine caught fire thanks to the alcohol in the sake and mirin). Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a pan and place the salmon skin-side down in the pan. Pan fry for 3-4 minutes per side or until cooked through, basting regularly with the reduced marinade.
To serve, scatter chopped scallion and toasted sesame seeds on top the fish. I also tossed a pound of baby spinach into the heated pan and sautéed that quickly to make a complete meal out of it. We even saved the sauce and used it on tofu and broccoli the following night, getting even more bang for our buck out of a delicious dinner that took minutes to prepare.