Salmon & Scallop Sashimi

Jim and I celebrated our fourth anniversary this past weekend. It’s the last one before we get hitched and our first-date anniversary falls by the wayside. Sadly, it wasn’t filled with dancing, or wining and dining somewhere fancy, but with a movie that I could hardly sit through because of back pain, and a few ice-packs and a stint on the couch.

Organic Scottish salmon

But luckily, there’s not much that could deter Jim and me from romance. It’s the reason, really, why we’re marrying this fall. Now, a year’s-running back injury isn’t an aphrodisiac, but lightly pounded sustainably raised organic Scottish salmon, served raw with a sprinkling of chives and Thai basil, and a drizzle of hot oil, can overcome the worst pain if you’re in the right company, landing you both in the romantic spirit.


My love affair with raw seafood rivals (not really) my passion for Jim. Granted, my relationship with raw seafood has more ups and downs than my relationship with Jim. He’s never left me staring into the abyss of a toilet bowl. But, when you find the perfect scallop, buttery and sweet and needing just a sprinkling of kosher salt, a grinding of black pepper, and a few healthy drops of fruity olive oil, you realize that it would be silly to judge all seafood based on a few bad experiences. It helps, though, to go about your seafood seriously.


So, these recipes (if you can call them that) won’t work for everyone. First off, you’ll need to have access to great seafood.  It’s not an easy thing.  You’ll need a seafood market, or a very trustworthy guy at your local grocery. Even if you go to a stand-alone seafood market, you’ll need to get to know your fishmongers. You’ll need to express your interest in fish. You’ll need them to know you’re serious and you want serious quality. You’ll also need them to like you. And you’ll absolutely need to tell them that you’ll be eating the fish raw.


You may not be able to get sashimi-making fish just when you want it. I almost always give at least one day’s notice. And, for a special occasion, it’s good to give as much notice as possible. Or you can just wait around, ask what’s good each time you go to the market, and drop whatever you’ve got planned whenever your fish monger is really excited about something. When we go to the market, and they hold out a scallop, asking us to try it, beaming from ear to ear, we immediately forget whatever we’d planned to eat that night, and buy some for sashimi (or to barely cook them and serve over a tomato compote). And, I’ll say it again, always be nice to your fish monger. I’ve learned to put away my pride when I step into my favorite fish joints. I’m at their mercy, and I’m rewarded with salmon sashimi, cut from a fatty section, on my anniversary, with my soon-to-be husband feeding it to me with chopsticks. Results may vary, but if you can find yourself some great seafood, I imagine they’ll be nothing short of spectacular.


Organic Scottish Salmon Sashimi

serves 2

I get my salmon from Metropolitan Seafood in Clinton, New Jersey.  You want to make sure it comes from a sustainable farm; otherwise buy wild salmon (it won’t be as fatty, but will still be good).

1 4 oz. center cut piece of salmon, skin off
a small handful of chives
a few leaves of Thai basil
soy sauce
fresh black pepper
kosher salt, preferably David’s brand
fruity, high quality olive oil
dried red chili flakes

Place the salmon on a piece of parchment paper. Cover the salmon with another piece of parchment paper. Using a rolling pin or other blunt object, tap the salmon until it flattens out. It’s okay if it breaks apart some — you want it to be in bite-size pieces.

Place flattened salmon on a plate.  Sprinkle with chives, basil, and a few splashes of soy sauce.  Grind on some black pepper and season with salt.

Heat oil with chili flakes in a small saucepan until it is just about to smoke.  Drizzle hot oil (without any chili flakes) over salmon, and serve with chopsticks.

Raw Sea Scallops with Olive Oil

serves 2

4 medium sized buttery, sweet sea scallops
kosher salt, preferably David’s brand
fresh black pepper
fruity, high quality olive oil

Remove the abductor muscle from the side of the scallop if it isn’t already removed.  Sit the scallop upright on its side and, with a very sharp pairing knife, cut the scallop lengthwise into thirds.  Arrange scallops on a plate in a flower pattern.  Sprinkle on a good amount of salt, freshly ground black pepper, and few glugs of olive oil.  Serve with chopsticks and some soy sauce on the side.


27 thoughts on “Salmon & Scallop Sashimi”

  1. Oh my! Lovely post, with great photos (as always). I will have to start cuddling up to seafood more because I want to try this immediately. It looks THAT good! Great post, Robin! 😀

    1. I’d be excited to see what you do with seafood, Kamran. When I first began to fall in love with fish and seafood, a whole new food world opened up to me! It’s funny, because I never really thought to name my blog Caviar and Codfish because I wanted to post about seafood a lot, but fish and seafood post are turning out to be the brunt of my blog. 🙂

  2. Wow. What luscious-looking fish.
    Our farmer’s market fish stand has folks who sometimes say “these scallops are for eating raw”–next time they say it, I’ll be back here for sure.

    1. Thanks! I imagine you can get really great stuff, Maggie. The guys at Metro Seafood use the Fulton Fish Market, and I’m guessing most respectable fish guys in NYC do too.

  3. I immediately want to move to (near) a fresh body of water! This looks amazing (and I had sushi for dinner with my roommate)!

    Congratulations of 4 years.

  4. So it wouldn’t be too obvious if I sent this to my boyfriend as a hint? Because it looks delicious. Sushi with an old movie and maybe a bottle of champagne could very well be my perfect night.

  5. I’m getting married in August, and we just celebrated our four-year anniversary in December. It’s kind of bittersweet to be essentially turning the clock back to zero and celebrating wedding anniversaries instead of first date anniversaries, isn’t it?

    The sashimi looks to-die-for. I have yet to find a great fish monger, so I usually leave my raw seafood eating to good restaurants, but you’ve tempted me into searching a little deeper for someplace I can buy excellent seafood!

  6. U have a wonderful world here and yup landed right on ur about me page thanx to Joy our super baker :-)))
    There’s loads of fantastic deliciousness here and i begin with seafood right here and now that have said hullo to u,am going to take a lovely walk around :-)))

  7. Happy 4 year you two! and I got an idea.. instead of fish markets you can come down here and catch some fabulous red snapper with us all on your own 🙂 Just a thought

  8. Pictures like this make me so sad that I live in the middle of the second largest country in the world. The ocean, and all of its bounty, is so far away.

    Happy four years to you and Jim! I hope your back is on the mend.

    1. Boo, that is sad, Dana! I’ll eat some extra sushi for you this weekend. (I’m sorry, that was mean.) 😉

      Thanks, and, I hope it will be on the mend soon…

      1. It’s not that fresh fish is impossible to come by here, it just doesn’t come easily on a student’s living.

        I totally want to move closer to an ocean.

  9. Happy Anniversary! Sashimi is one of my most favorite things in the world and I can seriously eat your both of your dishes every night of the year. Just gorgeous!

  10. Hi, my husband and I have been married for 9 1/2 years, and we are getting ready to celebrate our 10th meeting anniversary. So, have 2 celebrations a year! Sashimi looks amazing, by the way.

  11. My partner and I have been together 13 years–and I’d do it again in a flash. But raw fish has never done to me apparently what it has done to you. I don’t think I’d go back to that relationship! Still, the photos are gorgeous. I’m wondering about a little pistachio oil on the salmon.

    1. Pistachio oil would be great, I’m sure. We’re just currently addicted to the Fior di Macina Novello olive oil, so have been using it on everything. I think I want to do a chive oil on it soon though…

  12. Oh how I love sashimi and most especially salmon sashimi! But these are the kind of dish that I don’t have much courage to do by myself. I’m always hesitant in making raw fish or any raw seafood for that matter.

    Seeing your sashimi recipes here just made me decide to finally try it. They sound so delish and appetizing. Yum! Will be going to the Japanese seafood supermarket first thing in the morning tomorrow. Thanks!

    1. Hiya! Yes, Jim’s book is still available, from Amazon and at bookstores if you can find it… I have a link on my sidebar.

      I’d love to read some of your poetry.

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