Grilled Salmon

One of our favorite party dishes is a side of salmon, marinated in a spicy sauce with jerk seasoning. I hesitate to tell you that, because so many people were "burned" by jerk in the past, and now they're afraid of it. In this dish, the heat plays backup to some unique oriental flavors, and it's never allowed to get out of control. Of course, you can adjust the heat in the dish by adding more or different peppers and hot sauces. We think it's great just the way it is.

We splurge on a whole side of wild salmon, and put it in this marinade for two-three hours. You can take cheaper shortcuts elsewhere in the menu. This dish is a real diva, and deserves your respect.

Oriental Marinade

While we are featuring salmon in this recipe, this marinade works equally well on steak, chicken and pork. Steak and pork require the higher amount of jerk seasoning, and need to marinate longer (up to 8 hours in the fridge).

1⁄2 cup Kikoman's Low-sodium Soy Sauce

1 Tbs Asia Kitchen Fish Sauce

1 Tbs.  Spectrum Sesame Oil

2 Tbs. honey

juice of 1 lemon plus zest of whole lemon

2 inches of fresh ginger, grated

3 small cloves garlic, pressed

1 tsp to 1 Tbs Walker Woods or Busha Browne's Jerk Seasoning

2 Tbs. dried parsley

Grilling a Side of Salmon

A whole side of salmon can be intimidating to tackle at first, but armed with two large, VERY sturdy grilling spatulas, anyone can master this technique. We start the whole filet, skin-side down on a foil tray. Cook on the cool side of the grill, spinning it occasionally to cook it on all sides. Keep the thick side toward the fire a lot longer than the thinner tail-end. Baste the fish in the marinade frequently, and as it smokes, it begins to caramelize on the top and sides. Don't let it burn!

When the fish is slightly under-done (you can still see some dark, uncooked meat inside the thickest part of the filet), flip it out of the foil pan onto the hot side of the grill and leave it there (don't move it!) until it forms some grill marks. During this time, gently use the spatulas to remove the skin. Then slide the spatulas under the filet, lengthways, and carefully flip it over onto the just-denuded side. Where it hits, it stays – don't move it again until you have some light grill marks – then, using your spatulas in the same manner as before, scoop it up and put it on the platter you intend to serve it on. Keep the pretty side up! You can keep it in a warm oven for a few minutes – but it's best served right away.

Menu suggestions:

Sesame Asparagus

Mango Salsa

Mango-coconut/macaroon ice cream parfait

Bronzed Sea Bass

Flounder en papillotte

Grilled Shrimp in Garlic

Caribbean Shrimp Skewers

Grilled Shrimp Remoulade

Smoked Crabs

Grilled Lobster

Grilled Oysters

Grilled Salmon

Fish Tacos

Grilled Fish-of-the-Day

Smoked Tuna

Smoked Tuna Dip

Oriental Salad with Grilled Tuna

This salmon is a real diva, and deserves your respect. The spicy jerk seasoning sings backup to some unique oriental flavors. WOW!

Mango Salsa

The only thing to remember with this dish is to cube the mango, red onion and red bell pepper the same size. The jalapenos need to be a very fine chop.

1 jar of Del Monte SunFresh Mango slices

1/2 red (purple) onion

1 large jalapeno, seeded

1/2 red bell pepper

2 Tbs fresh cilantro, chopped

1 Tbs rice vinegar

juice of one lime

1 tsp lime zest

1 tsp Kosher salt

Combine all ingredients, cover, and let rest in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Overnight is OK.

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