I started cooking this dish during my pregnancy and it has now become a staple on the dinner menu. As a keen seafood eater, I was definitely disappointed to read about all the seafood products I could not consume, while pregnant. It was actually my downfall when I was desperately trying to keep my being pregnant a secret until we were past the ‘safe’ period. As soon as I unassumingly motioned away a prawn rice paper roll filled with bean sprouts, suspicion was rife! I am never one to turn down a rice paper roll, let alone food in general.
As you do when you fall pregnant, or as I did, was memorise the foods I had to avoid and start working on a meal plan. My body was going through so many physical changes, overnight I felt I couldn’t fit into my pants anymore. It was quickly dawning on me that I had to start eating better. Years of not eating breakfast, drinking too much and scoffing kebabs at all hours of the night/morning hadn’t done me any favours. So this monumental step change turned into 18 months of ‘dieting’ with a great deal of motivation. Trying to have and raise a healthy baby and losing the 20kgs I gained during my pregnancy. Now that is another post in itself!
So the experts say fish, are highly nutritious and should be consumed by adults and children, twice a week. Fish contain huge amounts of protein, are low in “bad” fats and contain Essential Fatty Acid (EFA’s) – Omega-3 fatty acids. The EFA’s in fish are not found in any other protein source.
The biggest implication when consuming a diet high in fish is the level of Mercury found in some. High levels of Mercury can cause developmental delays and it is recommended that pregnant women and children avoid those fish species high in Mercury. These include Shark (Flake), Ray, Swordfish, Barramundi, Gemfish, Orange Roughy, Ling and Southern Bluefin Tuna. Salmon on the other hand is a cold-water fish, low in Mercury and high in Omega 3’s.
Rafaela is starting to enjoy it. I have made her Salmon fish cakes and this recipe also. She gobbles it up. Raf is pretty inspiring when she eats like this, especially since it is was such a battle to get Andrew to try it and now he loves it too. I have also served this to friends and family a couple of times and it has gone down a treat. The great thing about this dish is you can jazz it up with the side accompaniments like Avocado Wasabi and Pickled Ginger. The Wasabi paste and Japanese Pickled Ginger can be found in Coles, I tend to stock up when they are on sale. These ingredients are easily accessible and affordable.
You can marinate the Salmon a few different ways. You can make a teriyaki sauce from scratch or you can buy a pre-made marinade. Ayam makes a great tasting sauce, without too many nasties in it. This is a super speedy meal. So depending on your preparation time and pantry items, you could go either way. For Rafaela, I use an organic soy sauce, crushed organic ginger and some lemon juice to marinate her Salmon in. Below are the recipes for both. Enjoy!
60ml Soy Sauce
60ml Mirin (Japanese rice wine)*
Juice of 1/2 Lemon
1 teaspoon of crushed Ginger
Rafaela’s Teriyaki Sauce
(Based on a piece of salmon width and thickness of her palm, about 1inch wide and high)
2 tablespoons of Organic Tamari Soy Sauce
½ teaspoon of crushed Ginger
Splash of Lemon juice
Ingredients (serves 4)
4 x 180g skinless Salmon fillets
Teriyaki sauce as above or pre-made Ayam Teriyaki Marinade.
1 tablespoon of Sunflower oil
180g of Organic Soba Noodles (I use Hakubaku brand noodles, pack of 3 x 90g, found in Coles and Woolworths)
1 teaspoon of Sesame seeds
1 Spring Onion thinly sliced
Splash of Sesame oil
3 teaspoons of Wasabi paste, or to taste
2 Avocados, flesh scooped
Japanese pickled ginger
Place the Salmon in a zip lock bag with the teriyaki sauce and leave it to marinate for as long as possible, overnight is great. Otherwise a minimum of 1hr is fine. Mix up the avocado and wasabi together and set aside.
Heat the sunflower oil in a large non-stick frypan over a medium heat. Remove the salmon from the bag, reserving any remaining marinade. Cook for 2-3 minutes each side until cooked but a little rare in the centre. Add the reserved marinade and allow to bubble for 1 minute. If you like your Salmon well cooked, then gently press on the thickest part with your finger, looking for spring back.
Boil water for noodles and cook according to the packet instructions. They usually take about 4 min. Once the noodles are cooked, strain and add a dash of sesame oil, sesame seeds and spring onions. Serve salmon with noodles and avocado wasabi. You can also add steamed vegetables such as; snow peas, broccolini or carrots.
For your baby, the obvious omits from this recipe, is the avocado wasabi and the spring onions. I tend to keep some mashed avocado aside to serve with some extra vegetables. If you are cautious about cooking oils, then consider cooking the salmon with some Coconut oil.