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Chilli – miso smoked salmon with steamed asparagus and mustard leaves

Yields1 Serving

If we could pick a veg of the month for May, it would have to be asparagus.Although the season can start earlier, it's soil temperature dependent, so May is a much safer bet than earlier months. Once considered a luxury, it's now widely available and affordable. Well known for its pairing with Hollandaise, asparagus doesn't have to be at the centre of the plate. In fact, it makes a great side dish, especially served alongside salmon as it is here.

 1 bunch of asparagus
 1 tsp finely chopped red chilli mixed with 1 heaped tsp Tideford miso paste
 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
 2 cm fresh ginger root, peeled and finely chopped
 1 green chilli, finely chopped
 A generous handful of spicy red mustard leaves (or watercress) roughly chopped
 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
 20 g coriander, roughly chopped
 2 150g slices of organic salmon fillet, skin on
 dash of toasted sesame oil
 2 tsp light soy sauce
 2 tsp fish sauce
 juice of 1 lime

Mix the chopped green chilli, garlic and ginger.


Cut the asparagus into 5cm lengths. Put the bottom, woody bits in a saucepan, cover with water and boil for twenty minutes to make a stock, Set aside to cool.


Put the chopped asparagus and mustard leaves in a heavy duty saucepan (one you have a lid for) and sprinkle on the chilli, garlic and ginger. Gently mix. Top with the spring onions and coriander.


Brush one side of each salmon piece with the chilli-miso paste and lay them on top of the asparagus mixture. Drizzle with the sesame oil, soy and fish sauce.


Strain the asparagus stock into the pan (you'll need about 250mls) and cover with a lid. A baking parchment (cartouche) seal really helps. Turn the heat onto high and once it comes to a boil simmer for four hours. Remove and allow to cool a little.


Serve with basmati rice and the lime juice.


If you don't like your asparagus too crunchy, cook for a couple of minutes before adding the salmon. You definitely don't want over cooked salmon.