Two weeks ago the grill masters for a birthday party feast served up two whole salmon. The way they were prepped was somewhat unique. One whole side was cut off in a single filet. The remaining side was left intact with the head, tail and rack. These half slabs of salmon were placed on large sheets of foil on a bed of Moroccan-style preserved Meyer lemons, fresh dill and onions and basted with Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc. After cooking on the grill, the rack et al was zipped off to leave the boneless flesh for service. The perfume of the salty lemons with the citrusy bite of the young white wine was a wonderful complement to the luscious salmon bathed in oaky smoke. The salmon had been purchased on special from G&G Market in Santa Rosa for $4.99/lb. The market buys these direct from Bodega Bay boats for price-savings and extra freshness.
On Friday I stopped by G&G to pick up a salmon steak to make for dinner. The whole salmon were $5.99/lb. The steaks were $6.99/lb. and an inch thick one was about a pound. I toyed with the idea of dusting off the Weber from its winter rest, but instead opted for a faster preparation. I seasoned the salmon steak then wrapped it tightly in foil with some scallion tops and capers. This was poached in boiling water for about 10 minutes to medium rare doneness. To serve, the juices collected in the foil packet were supplemented with a squeeze of lemon juice and a little bit of buttery French olive oil to enrich. Half the salmon steak was placed in a shallow bowl (the rest was saved for a cold lunch) in a pool of the juices and accompanied by toasted Della Fattoria bread. Easy, simple, and so delicious.