Monday, September 3, 2012

The Impulse Salmon Fillet Part 2: Cedar Plank Chipotle Salmon

After the first half of my salmon produced a great result, I had high expectations for the second: Cedar Plank Chipotle Salmon from Paleo Comfort Foods.

Simply Grilled Salmon and Cedar Plank Chipotle Salmon
About an hour before I was ready to start cooking, I started to soak my cedar plank in water.  The recipe says to do so for at least 30 minutes, but the printing on the boards I bought said an hour, so an hour it was.
I used a glass with water to keep the plank submerged.
Ingredient wise, this recipe is very simple.

The recipe calls for an indirect grilling method.  I have a small grill that has 2 burners.  So, I turned one on high and left the other burner off and let the grill heat.    
There wasn't much temperature difference between the sides.
I put the salmon on the soaked cedar plank and mixed the spices in a small bowl.  I sprinkled the spice mixture over the salmon and placed the plank on the grill.  

 I closed the lid and set a timer for 30 minutes.  When I went to get the salmon, this is what I saw.  It looked perfect.  The smell of the cedar was awesome.
The recipe recommends a cooked internal temperature of 135-140.  Mine was just in the middle of that range.  Perfect!

Accessibility and Cost of Ingredients:  See my comments in Part I about the salmon.  Other than the salmon, this recipes ingredients are all pretty accessible, at least, in Texas.  I can imagine that the Chipotle chili powder may be harder to find in different geographical locals. 

Prep and Cooking Time:  The recipe doesn't give a stated prep time, but its really minimal outside of remembering to soak your cedar plank in advance.  Do not skip using the cedar plank to save time.  It really does add to the flavor of the dish.  The cook time for me was 30 minutes.  

Clean Up:  A breeze!  No pots to scrub!  I did clean the cedar plank as I think I can reuse it.  I looked around online and the consensus seems to be if the board isn't too burnt up, you can use it again but you may want to soak it longer for its next use.

The Chipotle Salmon is at the top of the plate.

The Paleo Review:  Thumbs Up!  My taste tester Mike thought that the Chipotle Salmon had awesome flavor, better than the Simply Grilled Salmon, but it was a little too hot.  He thought that it might be better using a little less of the spice/pepper mixture.  I recommend not skipping the lime juice as it mellows the heat a bit and adds yet another dimension of flavor.  I really liked this dish.  For as easy as it is to throw together, I was surprised at how complex the flavors were despite the heat from the pepper.

I also like that this recipe gave an oven alternative if you do not have a grill.