holy shiitake

November 17, 2006

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Even after sending lots of salmon and halibut south for the family to fight over, my freezer is still overflowing with tasty reminders of the summer sun and days on the water. It is never as good this time of year as it was when we caught, but the memories of the time catching it makes it that much better. We’ll parcel it out over the winter, eating the prettiest pieces first. By the time 2007 rolls around, what’s left will end up as chowder, tacos, bouillabaisse. The hard part about having a bounty of something is what to do with it that will keep us enjoying it. I mean, if you get you’re favorite meal every night, before too long it’s going to lose it’s appeal. We had started out eating salmon pretty regularly when it was fresh in season, but that’s slowed considerably. For absolutely no good reason whatsoever, I equate fish with light summer eating. In our part of the world right now, it is cold and dark and light food the last think we want. We need roast beast and melted cheese, thick dumplings and long-simmered stews….I sound like a bloody hobbit. Anyway, this is a sauce for salmon that will help give your salmon a bit more of a winter attitude.

1/2 pound shiitake, sliced
1 tbs butter
2 largish shallots, minced
1 tsp red wine vinegar
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups chicken stock
1 glass white wine
1 sprig of thyme (or 1 tsp dried)
2-3 drops sesame oil

Melt the butter in a largish pan and saute the mushrooms till they are brown. Once they’ve turned and have given up most of their liquid, set them aside and keep ’em warm. Quickly add the shallots to the same hot pan, and sweat them over med heat until they are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the vinegar and reduce with a quick sizzle: It will just take a minute. Add the garlic and then slowly pour in the stock. Reduce by half, and then add the wine and the thyme. Reduce this until there’s about one cup of liquid left. Add in the cream and simmer till the sauce thickens a bit. Remove the thyme sprig, and stir in the warm mushrooms and a few drops of sesame oil – a little of that goes a long way. If you don’t want to add creme, then instead you can remove the saute pan from the heat and swirl in a tablespoon or so of butter to mount your sauce. Salt and pepper to taste, and serve over your salmon. Finish with roasted sesame seeds. I also do this with chicken, or even over a pork roast. Almost any kind of meaty mushroom will do fine. However, do try to avoid the bright red ones in the yard…

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 sandy July 26, 2007 at

wow, that sounds delicious and looks even better! I found your site looking for food resources in Anchorage. Your bread also looks beautiful btw

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