Salmon – Interesting Facts

Fully grown salmon lives in the northern parts of the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean and the biggest salmon population is found in Alaska.  When they are ready to lay their eggs, salmon leave the ocean and swim up-river, as they always return to where they hatched in order to mate, often crossing obstacles like rapids or water falls in their path. In fact, the salmon migration back to its birth place is so treacherous, that a large part of the population never makes it back to the ocean.

 

Food Facts Food Facts

Salmon

Nutritional group

protein

Calories

200 kcal per 100g

Nutrients

2.1g saturated fat, 7.4g unsaturated fat, 19.9g protein per 100g (farmed salmon)

Season

farmed salmon is available year-round, wild salmon is available from May to September

Storage

store cold

Shelf life

fresh fish should be consumed within 24 hours

Salmon - What is the Difference Between Wild and Farmed Salmon?

The type of salmon widely available from fish counters or from the frozen section is Alaskan wild salmon or Atlantic farmed salmon. There are five different types of salmon native to Alaskan waters: king salmon, sockeye salmon, coho salmon, chum salmon and pink salmon. Farmed salmon are predominantly bred in Norwegian aquacultures. There is a significant difference in taste between wild and farmed salmon.

In terms of taste, salmon bred in aquacultures is often actually superior to other wild salmon. The meat of the bred version has a higher fat content and is juicier because of it. Fresh farmed salmon often also has more flavour than its wild counterpart from Alaska. Generally, all five wild salmon types have some differences in taste, fat content and colour. Sockeye salmon is known for its red meat and high fat content, which makes it a particularly sought after type of salmon.

Salmon – A Culinary All-Rounder

Fresh salmon has a distinctive and aromatic flavour. Cooked properly, its flesh is incredibly soft and can be prepared in a variety of ways: fried, roasted, grilled or even poached – depending on the dish – whole or as a filet. It is also popular smoked as a cold treat.

For all cooking methods, the aromatic flavour of salmon harmonises incredibly well with garlic. For a Mediterranean spin, pan fry salmon with a little rosemary or sage. Thyme compliments the taste of roasted, poached or fried salmon. Serve with crispy baked potatoes, rice with spinach or pasta – the options are endless.

Salmon – Sushi

Along with tuna, salmon is the most popular choice of fish for sushi. Raw salmon, wrapped in rice and a nori sheet is a sushi classic. In order to enjoy salmon raw, maximum freshness and uninterrupted chilling must be guaranteed, as well as clean kitchen devices and surfaces. A useful tip for preparation: slice the sushi into sashimi as late as possible so bacteria has a smaller target area.

Salmon - What Makes It So Healthy

Salmon is rich in unsaturated omega 3 fatty acids. Although salmon is high in fat, the fat is mainly unsaturated, which is less easily stored in the body than saturated fat. The fat derived from fish also has a positive effect on cholesterol, by causing the concentration of “good” cholesterol, also known as HDL (high density lipoprotein), in the blood to increase, while the concentration of “bad” cholesterol, LDL (low density lipoprotein), decreases. HDL cholesterol contributes to lowering the risk of arteriosclerosis. What’s more, red salmon meat contains a lot of vitamin A and B.

Salmon – How It Gets Its Colour

Salmon meat gets its characteristic orange-red colour through its diet, which includes small crabs that contain a colouring agent called astaxanthin. Over the course of their life, the salmon’s flesh slowly starts to adopt the colour of the crab. Farmed salmon usually aren’t fed crabs, so to ensure their flesh still has the striking colour the fish is known for, astaxanthin is artificially added to its diet.

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