For those times when you want a taste of salmon but don’t want to make a meal of it, slice it into strips and bake it for a quick starter, sandwich filler or salad topper. You can use a fillet to make the strips, or if you buy whole salmon and break it down yourself, you can use the leftover trimmings. Salmon strips make a satisfying “jerky,” too; you just have to set your oven to its lowest temperature and turn it into a makeshift dehydrator.
Things You'll Need
Simple Baked Strips
Slice the salmon fillet crosswise into 1/2- to 3/4-inch-wide strips. Marinate the salmon for five to 10 minutes to incorporate flavor, if you wish. You don’t have to marinate to tenderize here, so use anything you like; five to 10 minutes in a lemon and oil, soy sauce and sugar or teriyaki sauce and miso marinade packs a lot of flavor into these little strips.
Heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat the salmon strips with thin layer of oil and lay them on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper or in an oiled shallow dish. Place the salmon in the oven.
Bake the salmon for five to six minutes to reach an internal temperature of 145 F. Bake the strips for about eight minutes for an internal temperature of 160 F or well done.
Slice the salmon into 1/2-inch-wide strips and pat them dry with paper towels.
Mix together equal parts kosher salt and raw brown sugar and pour half of it in an even layer in a shallow dish. Lay the salmon strips in the dish and cover them with the remaining salt cure.
Cure the salmon in the refrigerator overnight or for 12 hours. Remove the salmon from the cure and gently rinse the strips with cool water.
Make a glaze to flavor the salmon and help it set. The sugar in the glaze holds the salmon together when it dries and prevents it from falling apart when you eat it. You can use just about any liquid flavoring — soy sauce and cayenne pepper sauce work well — but you have to use salty sauces sparingly because they concentrate during drying and the salmon is already salty from the cure. For example, if you want to make a cayenne-pepper glaze, mix two parts brown sugar to one part water in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and add just enough cayenne pepper sauce to taste. Simmer the glaze over medium heat until it reduces by about one-fourth. You can also heat a sugar-based sauce, such as teriyaki or barbecue, over low heat to use as a glaze.
Brush the glaze on both sides of the salmon strips. Spray a wire rack with cooking spray and place it on a rimmed baking sheet. Place the salmon strips on the wire rack.
Heat the oven to the “Warm” setting and prop the door open a couple inches with a folded kitchen towel. Place the salmon in the oven.
Dry the salmon in the oven for about five to six hours, basting with the glaze on both sides every hour except the last. You want the salmon to finish dry, not wet from the glaze.
Remove the salmon strips and let them reach room temperature. Store the salmon “jerky” in an airtight bag or covered container for up to one week in the refrigerator.
Insert wooden skewers in the salmon strips before baking if you want to serve them as a starter.