Prepare a Light but Classy Hors D’oeuvre: Marinated Salmon

By Marie Rama, Bryan Miller

Appetizers that require marinating are a good way to start a meal. Their acidic freshness primes the palate for what’s to follow. The spectacular Salmon Marinated in Ginger and Cilantro can be prepared several hours in advance and has a tangy, herbaceous flavor that teases the palate without filling the stomach.

Don’t substitute powdered ginger for fresh gingerroot in this recipe; the same goes for the cilantro. The fresh ingredient tastes entirely different than the dried herbs do.

Marinating fish can be tricky business. The acid in the marinade — which comes from the lime and vinegar — actually “cooks” the surface of the fish. Be sure to leave the fish in the marinade only as long as the recipe indicates (4 to 5 hours, in this case).

Salmon Marinated in Ginger and Cilantro

Preparation time: About 15 minutes plus marinate time

Yield: 8 servings

2 pounds skinless, boneless salmon fillets

1/2 cup fresh lime juice

1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced

3 tablespoons white wine vinegar

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon grated fresh gingerroot

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Salt and black pepper

Lettuce for garnish

  1. Slice the salmon thinly (1/4 inch or less) widthwise, leaving strips about 2 inches long. Place the strips in a large bowl.

  2. Add the lime juice, onion, vinegar, oil, cilantro, gingerroot, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir gently and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 4 to 5 hours.

  3. Taste for seasoning. If you need more salt, blend it in thoroughly.

  4. Line small serving plates with the lettuce of your choice and place a serving of salmon over the lettuce. Discard the onion-marinade mix.

Per serving: Calories 174 (From Fat 76); Fat 9g (Saturated 1g); Cholesterol 62mg; Sodium 68mg; Carbohydrate 0g (Dietary Fiber 0g); Protein 23g.

If your salmon pieces have any small bones, use a pair of tweezers or your fingers to remove them before starting to prepare this dish.