Marinated Pan-Fried Salmon

by Jenn on June 28, 2010

in Diabetic Friendly,Gluten Free,Seafood


Although I grew up in New England and have fond childhood memories of many regional treats like maple sugar candy, my family did not cook much fish.  Actually, truth be told, I did not even know I liked fish until my early 20s.  I started to become a bit more adventurous in this area upon moving to college, and distinctly remember a time during my summer in NYC when my friends and I were in Little Italy, and were faced with a decision of ordering seafood in a restaurant.  My only previous experience eating ocean critters involved them being battered and deep-fried or in the form of clam chowder.  I decided to be brave and show off my “New England upbringing” talking about how natural it was to eat seafood, and ordered a pasta dish with sautéed calamari.  After all, I couldn’t let it be known that my seafood palate was so limited!  I very loudly exclaimed to all my friends about how much I loved seafood (well, I was from New England after all) and that I would eat anything that came out of the ocean – we all ordered the calamari, but feeling some irrational need to show off, I was the first to try it.  Looking back I really don’t know why, but it took a bit of courage for me to confront sea critters that did not come with a crispy batter coating.  Luckily for me (and my reputation amongst my friends),  I loved it upon the first bite – and ever since then, there really hasn’t been a dish involving a critter from the ocean that I have come across and wouldn’t try – from raw sea urchin roe in New Zealand to cod tongue in Newfoundland, I’ve definitely had some unique experiences!

During my then “newfound” love of seafood in my early 20s, as I was exploring tastes of fish and various shellfish, salmon was about the fishiest tasting dish that I really enjoyed.  It’s funny, because salmon actually isn’t that fishy.  Over the years I’ve been exposed to a much broader range of foods, but salmon still is one of my favorites.  I’m not really sure what to think about news of a genetically modified version that could possibly be approved soon, and I’m often torn on whether we should really be eating any seafood at all given issues with all forms of fish populations.

We do eat fish a lot less frequently than when we were living in the States, if for no other reason than Switzerland is a land-locked country and so seafood always has to be imported in, making it a bit more expensive than local poultry or saucisson.  But when we do, frequently I like to do something that involves little effort and yet imparts a lot of flavor – I love using a tamari base for marinades, because the salty umami flavor just blends so well with the quite distinct tasting salmon.  And on a warm summer’s day, what could be easier than a marinade and then a quick pan-fry?  Placed on a fresh bed of greens and topped with some onions made this a nice light, refreshing summer dinner :)

How do you like to enjoy fish in the summer??  What are your favorite marinades?



1/4 cup tamari
1/4 cup sweet chile sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbs. sesame oil
2 tbs. minced chives
2 salmon filets
2 tbs. canola oil

1. In a bowl whisk together the marinade ingredients, and pour into a sealable plastic bag.  Add salmon filets and seal bag after squeezing out the air, pushing the marinade around to completely cover the filets.
2.  Let marinate 20 minutes.
3. Heat up a skillet on med-high heat, and then add a little vegetable oil to the pan.   Cook the filets a couple minutes on each side, until cooked to the way you like it – I like mine with a little pink left, my husband likes his fully cooked through.  Either way, it should be delicate and flaking apart.  The marinade will caramelize a bit while cooking.
4. Serve on top of a salad of your choice, or accompany with your favorite veggies.


Also linked to – Gluten Free Wednesdays

On a side note, I’m happy to announce that I now have contact cards! Woohoo!  I’m so proud of myself because I designed them all by myself in Adobe Illustrator :)



Joy June 28, 2010 at 3:41 am

I wish I am able to have salmon more often I generally don’t really use a marinate but more relishes like a mango salsa. Great recipe! I like that you used tamarind.

Jenn June 28, 2010 at 3:47 am

Thanks! Mango salsa sounds like a perfect accompaniment to salmon! Though I did not use tamarind, but tamari – tamari is a version of soy sauce that I can find wheat and gluten free – its taste is very similar to soy sauce though.

Rosa June 28, 2010 at 10:04 am

That is a beautiful dish! That salmon looks so irresistible! Cute cards…



Jenn June 29, 2010 at 4:05 am

Thank you!! The salmon was quite irresistible!

Suzy July 1, 2010 at 2:08 am

Great looking Salmon….what do you mean by “sweet chili sauce”? and what brand do you like… thank you

PS Your cards are very smart!

Jenn July 1, 2010 at 2:46 am

Thank you!! This is the sweet chili sauce that I love to use, by Thai Kitchen….

Linda July 1, 2010 at 3:01 am

We rarely had fish when I was growing up too. I really just like mine pretty plain, especially salmon. Yours looks absolutely delicious, though!

Jenn July 4, 2010 at 5:16 pm

Thanks Linda!

Magic of Spice July 2, 2010 at 4:42 am

Wonderful looking dish…And great cards!

Jenn July 4, 2010 at 5:16 pm

Thank you! hehe I was really proud of my cards :)

Aubree Cherie July 3, 2010 at 10:15 pm

What a great way to cook salmon! I’ve yet to cook my own salmon because it scares me. This looks manageable even for me though :)

Love the look of the contact cards! That’ll be a great reference to have.

~Aubree Cherie

Jenn July 4, 2010 at 5:17 pm

Don’t let salmon scare you! You can buy the filets already prepped, all you have to do is marinate and cook – you can do it Aubree!

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