Notes: Toasted dried sea palm fronds - also called sea crunchies - are the leaves, or blades, of the sea palm, an ocean vegetable unique to Northern California, Oregon, and points farther north. The ribbed, noodlelike fronds turn crunchy-chewy when toasted. You can buy them in some natural-food stores and from Rising Tide Sea Vegetables (www.loveseaweed.com or 707/964-5663). Or you can substitute California nori: bake it in a 300° oven just until very crisp and slightly browned, 4 to 5 minutes; crumble onto salmon. The other optional ingredients - sake, mirin (sweet sake), onion or radish sprouts, and toasted sesame seeds - can be found in many well-stocked supermarkets and in Japanese grocery stores. If toasted sesame seeds aren't available, stir raw ones in a frying pan over medium heat until golden, about 5 minutes.
Sunset JULY 2003
1. In a 1- to 2-quart pan over high heat, stir soy sauce, wine, sherry, green onions, ginger, and sugar until boiling. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, with tweezers, pull out tiny pin bones from salmon. Rinse fish and cut into eight equal pieces; arrange in a single layer in a 9- by 13-inch baking dish.
3. Add lemons to cooled soy marinade and pour mixture evenly over fish. Cover and chill fish, turning pieces once, for at least 1 hour or up to 4 hours.
4. Lift fish from marinade and pat dry; discard marinade. Set a 12-inch nonstick ovenproof frying pan (or two 10-inch pans) over medium-high heat; add oil and tilt to coat. Set fish, skin side up, in pan(s) and cook until browned on the bottom, 4 to 5 minutes. With a wide spatula, turn pieces over. Transfer pan(s) with fish to a 500° regular or convection oven. Bake just until fish is barely opaque but still moist-looking in center of thickest part (cut to test), 3 to 5 minutes.
5. Transfer fish to a large platter or dinner plates and serve warm or at room temperature. Just before serving, mound sprouts equally on each serving, sprinkle with sea palm fronds and toasted sesame seeds, and mound crunchy cucumber salad alongside salmon (or serve in a separate dish).
Nutritional analysis per serving of salmon
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