Monday, August 22, 2011

Wild salmon with pesto and Jersey peaches

Sockeye salmonImage via Wikipedia
The fresh sockeye salmon fillets at Costco in Hackensack are from Canada.

Editor's note: When I initially published this recipe, I forgot to mention I sprayed cooking oil on the non-stick grill.

After a break, fresh wild salmon fillets are back on the menu at my house.

The skin-on sockeye salmon I bought today at Costco Wholesale in Hackensack was $8.99 a pound and from Canada, compared to $7.99 a pound for its American cousins.

In another departure, I cooked the salmon on a non-stick, All-Clad grill sprayed with cooking oil, instead of baking it in the oven.  

I cut a 1.36-pound fillet into five nice portions and left it on the cutting board, squeezing on fresh lemon juice, spreading pesto on each piece with a knife and topping them with roughly chopped herbs from my garden -- basil, oregano, rosemary and mint.

I preheated the grill, which covers two burners on the stove, over medium-high heat, then turned that down to medium before I slid the salmon pieces, skin side down, off the cutting board. They hit with a sizzle.

I took two fragrant Jersey peaches off the kitchen counter and cut them into about 12 sections, placing them on the grill with the fish and turning them after a few minutes, exposing grill marks.

I didn't turn the fish, but cooked it for about 10 minutes for rare. Next time, I'll cook the fish at a higher heat: medium-high.

I was in such a rush to try them, I only had time to throw some organic spring mix into a bowl for a simple side salad.

Pre-heating the grill meant the skin didn't stick, but took on a nice color and crunch, and the fish broke away cleanly on my fork.

The fatty fish, pesto, fresh herbs, and intensely sweet peach sections went together well, and I also liked the salty note from the Pecorino Romano sheep's-milk cheese I used in the thick, olive-oil-based sauce.

Sweet, savory and delicious. You can't ask for more than that.

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