Miso Glazed Salmon Quinoa Bowls
These veggie-packed quinoa bowls are a simple, nutritious meal the entire family will enjoy. Best of all, they can be prepped in advance, and are delicious either hot or cold.
Grain bowls have been a bit of a fad over the past couple of years. However, it’s a fad that never really appealed to me because they seemed a tad carb dense.
Don’t get me wrong. I am not on a carb-free diet. However, we all know that too many carbs are unhealthy.
So, when I found a grain bowl recipe in the May edition of Cooking Light magazine that included a bit of quinoa and a lot of greens, I was hooked. I loved the idea of a simple veggie-packed bowl with a bit of quinoa and nutrient-dense salmon.
However, my husband and my youngest son are both picky eaters. Plus, the entire family prefers dishes with bold flavours. Thus, the understated seasonings in the original recipe had to change.
Miso and salmon are a match made in heaven. So, it was easy to imagine a rich miso glaze with a hint of sriracha as a starting point. This addition immediately took my quinoa bowls in a decidedly Asian direction.
I really liked the idea of the quick pickle in the original recipe. Pickles add a welcome puckery tang to the bowls, along with a little crunch. However, I changed the original veggies to a mixture of carrot and cucumber, and used rice vinegar to carry the Asian theme throughout the quinoa bowls.
Beware, the pickles are highly addictive. Don’t get tempted to nibble on them while cooking, or you’ll regret it!
The salmon and pickles are served on a bed of quinoa and greens, lightly dressed with a simple lime vinaigrette. So, you wind up with a healthy, balanced meal in a bowl.
Best of all? Even the pickiest eaters won’t mind the baby spinach in these bowls! My youngest son — who squinches up his nose at suggestions of quinoa and spinach — ate the entire thing and helped himself to seconds!
Miso is a protein-rich fermented bean paste from Japan. It is usually made from soybeans, but can also be made from barley, and include a variety of grains.
If you’ve never tried miso before, you’re in for a wonderful surprise. It is a rich, flavourful paste that adds a welcome hit of umami to just about anything.
The good news is, it’s also incredibly healthy! Benefits of consuming miso include:
- A dose of healthy probiotics which improve your digestion and your body’s immune response;
- Reduced cardiovascular risk;
- Healthy antioxidants which inhibit tumours; and
- A healthy dose of copper, manganese, phosphorus, B vitamins, and vitamin K.
Miso is widely available in Asian markets or on the Asian aisle of well-stocked supermarkets. In most markets, you will find three varieties of miso paste: white (shiro), yellow (shinsu), and red (aka).
This recipe calls for the darkest miso, which is most flavourful, and it’s also fermented for the longest time. If you are shy about the flavour intensity, you could use one of the lighter misos the first time around. However, with a fish as rich as salmon, I believe the red miso is really the best complement.
This recipe is going on a regular rotation in my house. I hope your family likes it every bit as much as mine does. Bon appétit!