♬♩Schooool’s out for summmerrr♬♩And our house was exploding with excitement and euphoria last week, as our offspring graduated from high school with family from distant lands here to celebrate and witness the watershed event. The house has returned to normal – just the three humans and our two canine and feline masters. It’s Monday and I’m sitting in front of Mac and inspired to write about…. Hula Pie and Copper River Salmon!
After lunch at Duke’s in Huntington Beach to celebrate the June birthdays of my mom and brother, where honorees are surprised with an enormous piece of deliciously gooey Hula Pie (large enough for four people if the birthday boy or girl is willing to share), a light dinner was definitely in order.
We enjoyed a late dinner of fresh Copper River Salmon grilled with a light soy and brown sugar glaze (which is how my daughter came to enjoy fish years ago) and served with a simple salad of organic greens. The anticipated arrival of Cooper River Salmon in markets each spring pales in comparison to the rabid reception it received as the peachy-colored length of flavorful goodness, all crisp grill marks and glaze glistening, was gently and ceremoniously transferred from grill to platter to table. Barely able to keep salivating onlookers at bay, I decided to forego the usual photo session… so didn’t capture the masterpiece digitally for you.
In case you’re wondering why I’m going on about a piece of fish, Cooper River Salmon is the number one fish in Alaska and the world because of its taste and quality and has a very short “season” of availability. Wild salmon migrate up river each spring to spawn and the journey up Alaska’s Copper River is the most rugged of all. To endure their trek, the salmon store extra fat and oils and it is this high fat and oil content which imparts a flavor and quality that is unequaled – its also the kind of fat and Omega-3 oils that your cardiologist recommends.
Hopefully, it counteracted the effects of the Hula Pie on our circulatory system – Life is all about balance 🙂
Here’s the recipe for Chloe’s favorite Soy & Brown Sugar Glaze for Salmon:
3 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons Dijon or Chinese-style hot mustard
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
Enough for two to four 8-ounce salmon fillets, depending on how much sauce you like on your fish.
Heat grill to medium-high heat. Combine all glaze ingredients. Brush the salmon with the glaze. Place salmon on the grill (skin side down if they’re skin-on) and grill until fish is opaque – about 8 minutes for ¾-inch thick fillets. Brush remaining glaze on the fish midway through grilling to keep it moist. I usually don’t turn the fish and it cooks through just fine. Be careful not to overcook – nothing is worse than dry fish. Better to remove it from the grill, if the fish flakes under pressure from a fork, but is not done to your liking in the middle, put it back on the grill for another minute.
There are a number of online sites where you can order smoked or fresh Copper River Salmon. Photo credit: Northwest Seafood.
P.S. Wild salmon is a sustainable seafood and listed as a Best Choice on Monterey Bay Aquarium’s list of seafood recommendations.