Salmon is a regular guest at our table, often grilled with this simple sauce. Its sweet and pungent flavour easily stands up to the richness of the fish. Whenever possible we choose wild Pacific salmon; it’s the most sustainable choice available. We’re also big fans of farm-raised Atlantic salmon. It’s much better for us, and the environment, than beef or meat every day.
4 (about 6oz each) salmon fillets
lots of sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup of maple syrup
1/2 cup of grainy mustard
Season the salmon fillets with lots of salt and pepper.
Whisk the maple syrup and mustard together. Place the salmon in a small pan or resealable plastic bag. Pour the marinade over the salmon and marinate for 1 or 2 hours, or even overnight.
Build a hardwood fire and let it die down to a thick bed of glowing coals, or preheat your barbecue to its highest setting.
Grill the salmon fillets for about 5 minutes on the first side, a little less on the second side. Serve at once.
You can easily bake this fish as well. Just pop it into a preheated 400°F (200°C) oven for 12 minutes or so. You can personalize the marinade a bit as well by adding 1 teaspoon of curry powder or chili powder. You can also substitute honey for the maple syrup.
A recipe is merely words on paper; a guideline, a starting point from which to improvise. It cannot pretend to replace the practiced hand and telling glance of a watchful cook. For that reason feel free to stir your own ideas into this dish. When you cook it once, it becomes yours, so personalize it a bit. Add more of an ingredient you like or less of something you don’t like. Try substituting one ingredient for another. Remember words have no flavour, you have to add your own!
When a local fisherman shows up at my door with a fresh halibut, this is the gold standard recipe I reach for. It’s my favourite way to add lots of simple, bright Mediterranean flavour to the firm, meaty whitefish. This dish is spectacular enough for a special occasion but easy enough for a quick weeknight dinner.