Sake Poached Salmon with Somen and Fennel Salad Wasabi and Leftovers: Salmon Salad Sandwich with Taro Chips

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  • Total: 30 min
  • Prep: 10 min
  • Cook: 20 min
  • Yield: 2 to 4 servings
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1 cup sake

1 celery, sliced

1 peeled carrot, sliced

1 small onion, sliced

1 tablespoon sugar

2 bay leaves

1 teaspoon toasted black peppercorns

2 tablespoons soy sauce


4 (8-ounce) salmon fillets, skin removed, center cut

Salt and white pepper

1/2 cup ponzu

3 large sliced shallots

1 tablespoon togarashi, save some for garnish

2 tablespoons Japanese soy sauce

1/2 tablespoon sugar

3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 fennel bulbs, shaved, fronds reserved for garnish

1 pound blanched somen noodles

1/2 cup sliced scallions

Leftovers: Wasabi Salmon Salad Sandwich with Taro Chips

3 to 4 tablespoons wasabi aioli, recipe follows

2 cups poached salmon

1/2 cup fine diced celery

4 pieces foccacia bread, sliced and grilled

2 tomatoes, thinly sliced

1 head butter lettuce, washed and dried

Salt and black pepper

1 large head taro, very thinly sliced

Wasabi Aioli:

1 tablespoon wasabi paste

2 tablespoons minced garlic

1 tablespoon minced ginger

2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

2 egg yolks* (See Disclaimer)

1 cup canola oil

Salt and black pepper


  1. In a salmon poacher or large saucepot, mix the sake, celery, carrot, onion, sugar, bay leaves, peppercorns, soy sauce, and water, to cover. Add the seasoned salmon and slowly bring the liquid to a simmer. Simmer for 3 minutes then turn off the heat. Let stand for 5 to 10 minutes depending on doneness desired. I prefer medium rare (5 minutes). In a blender, add ponzu, shallots, 1/2 tablespoon togarashi, soy, and sugar. Blend on high speed and drizzle in the oil. Season with salt and pepper. In a large bowl, mix together fennel, somen, and scallions and toss with enough vinaigrette to coat the salad. There will be some left over for plating. Check for seasoning. 
  2. Plating: On a large plate, place a mound of the salad and top with hot salmon. Drizzle on a little of the vinaigrette and garnish with remaining togarashi and fennel fronds. 

Wasabi Aioli:

  1. In a bowl, mix together the wasabi aioli, salmon, and celery. Check for seasoning. Build the sandwich with the tomato and lettuce. Slice on the bias. Fry chips until golden brown and crisp. Season lightly with salt. 
  2. In a food processor, add wasabi paste, garlic, ginger, vinegar, and yolks. While processor is on, drizzle in oil, slowly at first until it emulsifies then more quickly. Check for seasoning. Store in refrigerator. Plating: Serve sandwich with taro chips.

Cook’s Note

Drink Suggestion: Wakatake Daiginjo "Onikoroshi" Sake