Friday, February 2, 2007

Friday

I've got a simplified version of Tes' Life-Changing Salmon (sounds kind of like something out of Lady Gregory, doesn't it?) in the oven now. Nice fresh wild Alaskan salmon filet, salt, pepper, dot with butter, slather on about a quarter-cup of persillade (equal parts fresh parsley and garlic, chopped fine), seal in foil, bake 15 minutes at 500 degrees. I get a real lizard-brain kind of pleasure out of smelling parsley and garlic while I'm chopping them; I even love the odor clinging to my hands for a few hours afterward. It's almost better than eating the final product. Almost, mind you. I'm very hungry. My stomach growls are making my cats glare at me.

I'm heading down to North Carolina tomorrow for a very belated Christmas with my mother. It's going to be a nice trip, even the ten-hour drive. I'm all about that Kerouacian American road trip thing. I'm going to try to leave early enough that it will still be daylight when I hit the mountains, and I'll probably stop by the Old Mill of Guilford on my way down and renew my supply of grits. I'll of course fill you all in on the high points when I get back Tuesday. There probably won't be much in the way of blogginess till then.

(Later) My salmon wasn't quite life-changing, but it was day-changing, and that's enough. Too many dark flavors. I should have squeezed a lemon over it, that would have helped. Still, it's hard to screw up fresh wild salmon, and this stuff was mighty good.

5 comments:

T said...

We made the salmon again last night, and yeah, you gotta use the lemon! Although I wonder what it would be like to substitute grapefruit juice....

Hope NC was good!

An Briosca Mor said...

In one of my classes at L'Academie we did a salmon presentation that was similar to the life-changing version, with the only difference being that we used parchment to wrap it all up rather than foil. Flavor-wise, it probably makes no difference, but parchment would probably be more traditional, wouldn't ya say? Plus it comes out of the oven nicely browned on the edges, unlike foil which looks the same way it did before you put it in.

The only essential ingredients to this recipe would be the lemon juice, a bit of oil and salt and pepper. Maybe a bit of garlic too along with whatever herbs or finely-chopped vegetables you want to throw in. Grapefuit juice or even lime juice would probably work as a sub for the lemon, providing the requisite acidity with a bit of a different flavor profile.

Actually, the combo of lemon/lime, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper is pretty potent just on its own. Pretty much every time I cook boneless chicken breasts, no matter how I'm doing it, I marinate them first in lime juice, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Adds a nice flavor undertone and keeps them nice and moist no matter how they're cooked.

T said...

Tradition Schmadition. You know what we think about that around here! (Errrrr...quite a lot?)

We've been doing shallots, but garlic would be good, too...though my favorite garlic + salmon rendition is poached (or otherwise ungreasily cooked) salmon with mayo + lemon juice + garlic.

Rob said...

The first time I had anything cooked this way was in a Chinese restaurant in Athens, Georgia. It was a plate of about five little packets of foil, each containing a three-bite-sized hunk of chicken with ginger and scallions. Amazingly good.

All honor to nongreasiness, but my favorite way of cooking salmon is still oven-roasting it with great lashings of butter. If your salmon is the really good wild stuff, you hardly even need to salt it.

T said...

Oh, you know me--I'm *all* about greasy, except that I can't have it right now. But hmm...maybe I'll have to try the ginger chicken thing....