When we first moved into our house, I had carved out a small patch of land for the herb garden. Since the irrigation was a little messed up, the gardenette was close to a hose and small enough to be manageable daily.
Once the main garden was built last October, I had transferred all my energy, plants and herbs into raised beds and sort of neglected the temporary gardenette. Most everything had died (that patch is still without automatic irrigation) except for the weeds and the fennel plants, which had miraculously thrived with no attention and no water. I have no idea what super-strain of fennel this is, but heck, I’m grateful.
I’ve got more fennel than I can ever eat myself, so I’ve been inserting both the bulb and the fragrant fronds into salads and grilling recipes when we entertain. People say fennel is licorice-y, but it’s so much more than that. Fennel is refreshing, slightly minty with the fragrance and “mist” of anise. I think the word, “licorice flavor” is too strong of a description — I don’t taste the licorice flavor straight on my tongue, it’s more of an overall delicate aroma. Kind of like how fresh basil, mint or dill tastes in your mouth.
Fennel is perfect to pair with miso, honey and orange. It’s an herb that can stand on its own – the fresh crunch of the bulb and don’t forget the lovely fronds, which are equally fragrant with a more floral slant.
If you’re not a big fan of fennel – I’ve got substitutes for you in the recipe.
This is another miso inspired recipe I’ve developed for my client, Miso & Easy, a ready-to-use miso paste. Use any miso paste that you wish!
Here’s what ya need:
The first step is to marinate your salmon (or any fish of your choice) with miso, honey, ginger, sake (or white wine – or omit the alcohol altogether). Marinate in refrigerator for 1 hour or even overnight is fine.
On a baking sheet, layer sliced fennel bulb and a few orange slices. Substitute onion for the fennel, omit the orange if you’d like.
Lay the marinated salmon on top.
Top with fennel fronds – or fresh herb of your choice (basil, parsley, etc) You can even top it with more orange slices if you want.
Bake until done and serve with rice.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
The fennel and orange gives the salmon amazing aroma. They also serve another purpose - they keep the salmon elevated so that heat can circulate all over the salmon fillet. If you do not have fennel, substitute with thinly sliced onion and fresh herb of your choice (parsley, basil, thyme, oregano, etc.) The miso marinade pairs perfectly with salmon.
1. Marinate the salmon with the salt, pepper, Miso & Easy, honey, sake and ginger at least 1 hour or overnight in the refrigerator. It is easiest do this in a resealable bag.
2. When ready to cook, Preheat oven to 375F. Thinly slice the orange (you can keep the peel on) and thinly slices the fennel bulb. Layer the orange slices and fennel slices on a baking sheet. Place the marinated salmon on top (discard the leftover marinade.) Cover the salmon with several sprigs of the fennel fronds. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until desired level of doneness.