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Smoky Salmon with Miso-Dressed Vegetables
© Con Poulos

Smoky Salmon with Miso-Dressed Vegetables


Smoking salmon at home may sound like an intimidating project, but chef Michael Cimarusti's amazing method takes just a few minutes and requires no special equipment.

  1. 1/4 cup white miso
  2. 1/4 cup chicken stock
  3. 3 tablespoons mirin
  4. 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  5. 3/4 teaspoon finely grated peeled ginger
  6. 1/4 teaspoon finely grated garlic
  7. 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  8. 3 tablespoons canola oil
  9. Four 6-ounce, skinless center-cut salmon fillets, about 1 inch thick
  10. Piment d'Espelette (see Note)
  11. Kosher salt
  12. 1/4 cup small hardwood chips, such as hickory or applewood
  13. 1/4 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded and caps thinly sliced
  14. 1/2 small onion, thinly sliced
  15. 1/2 small fennel bulb—halved, cored and thinly sliced
  16. 4 medium carrots, thinly sliced on the diagonal
  17. 4 baby turnips or large radishes, thinly sliced
  18. 2 cups lightly packed baby spinach
  1. In a saucepan, cook the miso, chicken stock, mirin, vinegar, ginger and garlic over moderate heat, whisking, until hot, 3 minutes. Whisk in the soy sauce and move off the heat.
  2. In a large cast-iron skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil. Season the salmon with salt and piment d'Espelette; add to the skillet and cook over high heat, turning once, until lightly browned, 2 minutes total. Transfer to a plate.
  3. Working in a well-ventilated kitchen, wipe out the skillet and add the hardwood chips. Cook the chips over high heat until they start to smoke, 5 minutes. Place a wire rack over the skillet and set the salmon on it. Tent the salmon with a large sheet of heavy-duty foil and smoke for 5 minutes, until the salmon is medium within. Transfer the salmon to a plate.
  4. Meanwhile, in another large skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the shiitake and onion and cook over moderately high heat, tossing, until browned in spots and just starting to soften, 4 minutes. Add the fennel and carrots and cook, tossing, until crisp-tender, 2 minutes. Add the turnips and spinach and cook, tossing, until the spinach is just wilted, 1 minute. Season with salt and sprinkle lightly with piment d'Espelette; add 1 tablespoon of the miso dressing and toss well. Transfer to plates. Flake the salmon, scatter it over the salad and serve, passing the remaining dressing at the table.
Notes Piment d'Espelette, a mildly spicy red pepper, is available at specialty food shops and lepicerie.com.

Suggested Pairing

Ripe, dry German Rieslings can go with a range of vegetables, like the ones in this dish.