Thank god for people who refuse to follow directions. I was drafted into an email recipe exchange (sort of a chain letter/pyramid scheme, but with recipes) and, for the first time in my life, actually decided to participate. It was a simple calculation--potential for a bunch of good recipes, versus almost no effort to send a recipe since I already had a website full of them. I got a decent yield, but the best of the bunch was this salmon from a person who, by the rules of the recipe exchange, shouldn't have sent it to me, but to the next person down on the list.
I opted to saute a plastic bag of baby spinach in 2 Tablespoons of olive oil and 3 cloves of minced garlic, and serve with some Whole Food corn bread muffin tops. The original recipe suggested serving the salmon with brown rice and oven-roasted asparagus, which I'm confident would be delicious as well.
The Human Vacuum said "You could get exactly this plate for $27 dollars at a nouveau cuisine-type place." It's true. The glaze was just fresh interesting enough, and the plating was very attractive, even if I do say so myself.
Salmon with Soy, Maple and Adobo
Mix together in a shallow bowl:
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 Tablespoon adobo, the red tomato-based sauce from a can of chipotle peppers (you can get these in the Mexican section of almost any grocery store, even though they sound fancy)
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 pound salmon filet
Marinate for a bit. (I had already broken that age-old rule and gone to the grocery store while absolutely starving. When I got home, I threw the marinade together, put the groceries away, and started cooking. 10 minutes at best. It was still awesome. The original recipe says to marinate for half an hour, which you should feel free to do. I consider it a point of honor to treat marinating times as loose suggestions at best--and am willing to do away with that step altogether if I'm in a hurry. Sort of like stop signs at deserted intersections.)
Anyway, saute the salmon in a skillet, browning both sides and cooking until just approaching opaque in the middle (see below for my super no-fail salmon sauteing technique). Meanwhile, briskly simmer the marinade in a separate saucepan until it is reduced to a scant 1/4 cup.
Drizzle glaze over fish and serve with the sides of your choice.
Super no-fail salmon sauteing technique
Heat up a dry skillet on high. When the skillet is very hot, drop in the salmon, skin side down. Wait for 2-3 minutes until the fat starts to render out. Then flip the salmon, scrape the skin off (which will be incredibly easy at this point), and throw the skin away. If the skin sticks to the surface of the pan, all the better. Just flip the fish to another part of the pan, scrape it up and throw it away. Sear the other side well (another 2 minutes, until a brown crust forms). Flip once more, then turn the heat to medium-low and cook until the fish starts to threaten to become opaque in the center. The gorgeous brown crust this technique creates is worth the house full of fishy smoke it produces, so open the windows before you try this technique and enjoy.