Salmon has always been my favorite fish. Haddock is nice. Cod is lovely. A trout from the lake is almost incomparable.
But when all is said and done, my heart belongs to a piece of wild caught salmon.
Some people are off-putted by salmon’s strong flavors. Where haddock is subtle and shy, salmon is loud and confident. But the secret to working with its vivid personality, is to either (a) showcase it with simplicity or (b) find a marinade or rub that works well with the stronger flavors, thereby masking any “fishiness” that some find to be overwhelming. That being said, a good piece of salmon should never taste “fishy.” Strong. Loud. Sweet but lively. Yes. But never “fishy.”
Most of the time, a sprinkle of sea salt and a dash of fresh pepper are the only extras that find their way on my plate. But once in a while, on some rare occasions, I find the need to try something new.
I prepared a simple rub, taken from Cooking Light’s website. I was a little skeptical of the ingredients (chili powder? cumin?) but decided to just roll with it.
On the side, we grilled up some asparagus…
…and roasted some butternut squash (425 degree oven, 20-25 minutes, flipped halfway through.)
One important thing to keep in mind when cooking salmon is to please, please, puh-lease avoid overcooking! Nothing will ruin a beautiful piece of wild caught salmon like letting it sit a few minutes too long on the grill. Salmon should flake when it’s ready. And it should melt on your tongue as you take your first bite.
In other words, if you are chewing your salmon like you chew your chicken, you know there’s something wrong.
Dad is the grill master in our family, and so this highly pressured job was left in his hands. As always, it came out perfect. :D
Grilled Asparagus with a Spritz of Fresh Lemon
Roasted Butternut Squash
Maple Glazed Salmon
Maple Glazed Salmon—courtesy of Cooking Light
This recipe is quick and easy to prepare. You can even make the rub the night before, sparing you any of the preparation duties for the following day. This is especially nice during a busy week.
Any leftovers are fabulous served as a sandwich, in a stir fry, or simply as a salad topper for your lunch.
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp ground ancho chile powder (or, you could use an extra tsp of regular chili powder)
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 4 (6-oz) salmon fillets, preferrably wild caught
- Cooking spray
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- Prepare grill, heating to medium.
- Combine first 5 ingredients. Sprinkle fish with salt, rub with paprika mixture.
- Place fish on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 7 minutes. Drizzle fish with syrup; grill1 minute or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.
Question: Do you regularly eat fish? What is your favorite kind and how do you prepare it?