In this Japanese preparation sushi grade salmon is thinly sliced and quickly seared using a kitchen torch until the top is just cooked. I top it off with a splash of ponzu sauce, a sprinkle of green onions and toasted sesame seeds.
This seared salmon sushi recipe also known as salmon aburi is one of my most popular dishes on social media and I’m finally adding a recipe! When I used to visit my uncle he would make this for us as a snack and I’ve been making it ever since. It’s always a hit whether I’m serving it as a first course appetizer or as a quick, simple entrée. While it is often served as nigiri – a slice of fish over rice – instead I opt to lay the fish out on a plate like sashimi or a crudo. I like to serve it with a side of rice, avocado or cucumber salad.
Aburi is a Japanese preparation of fish sushi quickly broiled using a blow torch/ kitchen torch. The word “aburi” means “flame seared” in Japanese. The technique is used to gently sear the surface of the fish to create a contrast in texture of a grilled surface and creamy, raw underside of the fish.
I recommend using this kitchen torch found here . I have tried several and this is my favorite since it is more powerful than others (which can be about as weak as a lighter) making it easy to quickly sear the top of the salmon. The kitchen torch is filled with butane. Because it is seared quickly (think like creme brûlée), the fish does not take on the flavor of the butane. When torching the fish, be sure to do it on a heatproof plate or surface. If your torch is not very strong (meaning it will take longer to cook the fish), I recommend placing the fish over ice before touching it so it doesn’t overcook or overheat.
Using Raw Fish
While it can seem intimidating since you are working with raw fish (as long as you buy fresh high-quality ingredients) there is no reason for it to be daunting.
Ask your fishmonger for sushi grade fish, they should be able to provide much more information about whether their fish can be eaten raw. If they don’t know then that is a red flag within itself.
It is important to make note of how long the store or fishmonger has had the fish. I buy the sushi-grade fish from my local seafood market the day of, or day before, making dinner as fresh as possible. All fish that is going to be eaten raw should be previously frozen. This kills any harmful parasites.
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