Poached Coconut Ginger Salmon


There are so many delightful flavors melded in the broth of this dish that your taste buds will be surprised and tickled. While the coconut broth puts this dish in the “cozy” food category, the infusion of ginger, lemongrass, and kaffir lime leaves adds an exotic twist. The fun part of this dish is watching the broth evolve to a pinkish hue as it cooks. That’s the time to inhale deeply, taking in the aromatics. In a few minutes, you’ve gone from simple stock and coconut milk to a delicately balanced silky broth. That’s the magic!

1 pound wild salmon fillet, pin bones removed, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
8 cups Magic Mineral Broth or store bought vegetable broth
2 (14.5-ounce) cans coconut milk
3 (1-inch) pieces of fresh ginger
2 shallot bulbs, halved and bruised
3 Kaffir lime leaves
1 stalk lemon grass, cut into chunks and bruised
2 teaspoons Thai red chili paste (optional)
Squeeze of lime juice
Chopped scallions, fresh cilantro, or fresh mint, for garnish

Season the salmon with 1/4 teaspoon salt, cover tightly, and refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes and up to several hours.

In a large straight-sided sauté pan or a low-sided pot just large enough to hold the salmon in a single layer, bring the broth, coconut milk, ginger, shallots, lime leaves, lemongrass, and 1/4 teaspoon salt to a slow boil over medium heat. Let the ingredients infuse their flavor into the liquid for about 20 minutes. Decrease the heat to low and continue to let the broth develop for another 30 to 40 minutes; it will be worth the wait.

Remove half of the broth from the sauté pan and reserve for a future use. For a little more heat, stir in Thai red chili paste to taste.

Slide the salmon into the remaining broth and poach over medium heat for 7 to 9 minutes, just until tender. Serve in a shallow bowl with the broth ladled on top. Squeeze a bit of lime over each fillet and garnish with scallions, cilantro, or mint.

COOK'S NOTE: Store the broth in the fridge for up to 1 week in an airtight container.

Photo Credit: Scott Peterson

Reprinted with permission from One Bite at a Time: Nourishing Recipes for Cancer Patients and Their Friends Copyright © 2008 by Rebecca Katz with Mat Edelson, Ten Speed Press, a division of the Crown Publishing Group, Berkeley, CA.