A recent family favourite no-fuss, one-tray baked dinner. I created a recipe for this Oven Baked Miso Salmon after discovering that I could buy slabs of boneless salmon online. This Japanese-inspired Asian baked salmon only needs a really good marinade that can be prepared ahead by mixing a handful of ingredients. Chopped potatoes and carrots get semi-roasted first, marinated salmon gets added to the tray and everything gets baked together again. Finally, lots of fresh greens and sesame seeds for a topping and steamed rice on the side. A delicious, full of flavour dinner that everyone loves!
Baked Whole Salmon Side – Weeknight Dinner And Celebratory Centrepiece
The beauty of baking a whole slab of salmon is that on weeknights it is a hands-off, fuss-free dinner that basically cooks by itself and on special occasions like a dinner party or Christmas lunch, it kicks up things a notch by looking spectacular without much effort. A great dish for sharing.
Buying a whole side of boneless salmon can be a bit tricky as it is not available everywhere. A trip to your local fishmonger or the fresh seafood section at your local supermarket will remedy that problem. I have started buying mine online from Harris Farms or Delish Deliveries. They source it directly from the Sydney Fish Markets and it arrives at your doorstep within a day. The weight can vary sometimes but more often than not, it is a whopping 1.2kg of a whole side of salmon with the skin on. My recipe for the marinade has been tested for 800g, 1kg and 1.2kg slabs of salmon. I have given slight adjustments to the marinade in my notes for different weights of salmon.
A Japanese Inspired Oven-Baked Miso Salmon
I must admit, I used to find cooking a whole of any kind of fish very daunting. There is the eternal dread of overcooking the fish. But fret not. My recipe is foolproof and cooks the salmon to perfection. In fact, if you make it once you will want to make it every week because it will be the simplest dinner you cook in your kitchen.
This recipe is inspired by beautiful Japanese flavours. If you notice, most Japanese rice dishes are very simple. The rice is simply steamed without any salt to allow to soak up the intense flavour of the marinade slathered protein on top. The dishes are often dry (i.e. without sauce) but don’t feel dry when you are eating. They feel juicy, tender and packed with big umami salty-sweet flavours with just enough sauce coating the mains.
The beautiful marinade for this dish is an ode to that Japanese style. It is big in flavour, too salty even on its own but once it gets slathered on the fish and bakes, it crosses over into perfection. You can add any veggies of your choice but I find potato and carrot add a nice heft to the dish and go really well with salmon. And finally, lots of thinly sliced spring onion and coriander for that fresh lift at the end.
- 1.2kg side of salmon (2.5cm high), pin-boned and skin on
- 3 large carrots, peeled and sliced at an angle
- 3 large potatoes, peeled halved and sliced at an angle
- sea salt flakes, freshly crushed black pepper, a drizzle of olive oil
- 3 tablespoons white or red miso paste
- 3 tablespoons mirin
- 3 tablespoon cooking sake
- 3 tablespoons light soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger
- 3 spring onions, trimmed and thinly sliced at an angle
- big handful of fresh coriander leaves, chopped
- white and black sesame seeds, to garnish
- Pre-heat oven to 200°C (180°C fan-forced).
- Line a large half-sheet rimmed tray (44cm X 31cm) with baking paper. Arrange chopped veggies along the two longer sides of the tray. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a bit of olive oil. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 15-20 minutes.
- Place salmon skin-side down in a large, shallow bowl. Prepare the marinade by mixing miso paste, mirin, sake, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic and ginger in a small bowl. Spoon 3 tablespoons of the marinade over the salmon and rub gently to coat the salmon under and over. Let it rest while the veggies roast.
- After 15 minutes, bring the tray of veggies out of the oven. Using a spoon, carefully move the veggies further along the sides of the tray to make room for salmon in the middle. Add the salmon skin-side down to the tray in the center. Spoon all but 2 tablespoons of the marinade over the salmon. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Increase heat to 220°C (200°C fan-forced) on regular or Grill function and bake for a further 2-3 minutes to colour the salmon a bit. When done, remove from the oven, drizzle with the remaining marinade and allow to rest for 5 minutes with loosely covered foil. The salmon will continue cooking.
- Garnish with spring onion, coriander and sesame seeds. Serve with steamed rice.
For an 800g slab of salmon, reduce miso paste and soy sauce to 2 tablespoons each. After adding the marinated salmon to the tray of semi-roasted veggies, adjust cooking time to 16 minutes at 200°C (180°C fan-forced) with a further 2 minutes at a higher temperature.
For a 1kg slab of salmon, the ingredient quantities, cooking time and temperatures are same as the main recipe for 1.2kg slab of salmon.
Although this recipe is fool-proof, the end result depends on the thickness of your salmon slab. If the salmon slab is thicker than you will need slightly more cooking time. 1-2 minutes extra should suffice. If after cooking, when you cut into the salmon you find it too pink, just heat it in the microwave for 1-2 minutes and it will cook right through.
I don’t add all of the marinade to the salmon before cooking. I find this dries out the marinade completely. I reserve about 2 tablespoons of the marinade to add to the salmon AFTER cooking. This gives you a nice juicy coating and maximum flavour.