Sunday, 31 December 2017

Salmon-chanted New Years

On the last day of 2017, you are, of course, going to welcome in a new year with a New Year’s salmon dinner before not watching Kathy Gifford once again embarrass Anderson Cooper in Times Square. Her depiction of Trump as a bleeding head got her removed from the annual embarrathon. I am sure Anderson is as happy as the rest of us.

He would even be happier were he to live in BC and have a nice salmon dinner to ring out the old and ring in the new. While I have several salmon recipes, I keep returning to one so simple and tasty, it is a winner.

Lay a salmon fillet out on tin foil in a cookie tin, edges of foil rolled up and over the edges of the tin, to keep all the sauce in with the fish, and to drizzle on during serving. Mix several ounces of Bullseye Bold Original BBQ sauce in a bowl along with an ounce or two of China Lily soy sauce. It must be China Lily as it has the best taste for this recipe of all the brands. It’s the carmelized taste and the salt. The soy sauce cuts the harshness of the BBQ sauce and allows it to flow when ladled out onto the fish.

Before covering the fish with the sauce, cut some garlic into thin slices. Also get out the Demerara sugar; this sugar has the most taste of all sugar products and you will taste the difference, as this is a strong-tasting recipe. 

Now completely cover the fillet with the sauce, allowing the rest to run out onto the tin foil. This is followed by laying down the garlic slices on the fish, as many as you wish. Then add raw pineapple in wedges, also the length of the fillet, and any remainders in the sauce around the fish. At this point, you take the Demerara sugar in your hand and completely cover the filet, so that nothing other than the sugar is showing.

Put another sheet of tin foil over the fish, and place the tray in the fridge to blend in the hours leading up to dinner. Once cooking time arrives, take the foil off the top, and put the tin in an oven preheated to 400 Degrees F. Cooking time will be 18 to 22 minutes to when you check the fish to see whether some of the protein is welling up onto the surface as a white liquid. 

Once you see some surface protein action, most of the fish will already be cooked. Take the tray from the oven and twist in the shoulder with a fork or knife. The meat should still be raw in this thickest portion of the fish (the rest being cooked). If it is cooked, rest the fish. If you see raw flesh, put the fish back in the oven.

As soon as you see white liquid coming from where you twisted the flesh, the fish is done. This will be less than five minutes from when you have put the fish back into the oven. Fish is cooked in the instant you see the liquid and there is nothing worse than over cooked fish. It is better to be a minute under than a minute over. Watch the oven like an eagle (hawks don’t eat many fish here on the coast).

Put the tray down on a towel on a surface. Put the second sheet of foil back on the fish, and neatly over the edges. Cover with a bath towel double folded so it will keep in the heat. Cover the entire tray so no part of it is showing. And then rest the fish until it is time to serve. You should rest it for a minimum of 15 minutes, as it really improves the dish.

When serving, use a spatula to slip between the skin on the bottom and the fish just above it. Slice pieces from dorsal to ventral surface gently with a regular knife (it need not be sharp as the fish is cooked and soft and will come apart easily). Finally, drizzle on some more sauce and pineapple.

The best vegetables to eat with this dish are strong ones. Broccoli is the best, followed by Brussel sprouts – adult flavours, and for children carrot is best. Also add steamed - but not over cooked - beans. Serve with a plate of diagonally-sliced bread, a baguette or one of those multi-grain ones that require a few minutes cooking in your oven to crisp up. Enjoy.

The ingredients are:

Salmon fillet
Bulls Eye Bold Original BBQ sauce
China Lily soy sauce
Demerara sugar
Sliced garlic cloves
Sliced pineapple.

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