Wife and I were at the supermarket this morning for our weekly grocery shopping. While she went around in her regular route from row to row filling up the shopping cart, I was looking around for ideas and interesting ingredients for our dinner tonight.
For selfish reason, I was actually in a dilemma whether should I feature salmon belly on this blog or not. I have always been puzzled that such a delicious and precious cut of the fish is sold at a fraction of the price. If words start getting around and the world finds out how good salmon belly is, prices will double or triple. :) But I still believe good things must share and especially with my blog readers and friends!
Just sprinkle sea salt and pepper over the belly and pan fry over medium heat. You will get a golden and crispy layer on the outside and soft, juicy and flavourful meat, that melts in your mouth, inside. Absolutely heavenly!
This is perfect on its own with glass of cold white wine but I combined the salmon belly with squid ink spaghetti, spinach and brown mushroom for our dinner tonight.
Salmon Belly Squid Ink Spaghetti with Sautéed Mushroom and Spinach
8 strips salmon belly
250g squid ink spaghetti
200g brown mushroom (cut into quarters)
300g spinach leaves (Blanched in salted water with olive oil)
6-8 cloves garlic (chopped)
100g chicken broth (optional)
1 spoonful mixed herbs
Salt and pepper
Wash and pat dry the salmon belly. Marinate salmon belly with sea salt on the skin side and with sea salt and pepper on the meat side.
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente.
Meanwhile, heat up frying pan and add just enough olive oil. The belly will give up a lot of fat when frying so you don’t need much oil.
Pan fry salmon belly skin side down on medium heat until skin becomes golden and crispy. Flip over and pan fry for another minute. Remove from pan and let rest on kitchen towel to absorb excess fat.
Pour away excess oil. In the same pan, saute the mushroom until soft and moist. Add a tablespoon of olive and saute some chopped garlic without browning. Add salt and pepper to taste. Put aside and keep warm.
In the same pan, heat olive oil and saute remaining garlic without browning. Toss cooked spaghetti in the pan with mixed herbs and the garlic oil, then season with a little coarse salt, to your taste. Add the broth (or pasta water) and toss for another minute for pasta to soak up the sauce.
To serve, divide the spaghetti equally into 4 pasta plates. Spoon the sautéed mushroom and spinach on top of the pasta.
Cut each salmon belly into two. Top the pasta dish with the belly. Garnish with fresh dill and serve immediately.