I am not a summer baby and few things make me happy in mid-July: air conditioning, homegrown tomatoes and fishing season. I've got a patio garden on the brink of yielding baskets of ripe, juicy, plump heirloom tomatoes (make sure to check back soon for some delicious tomato recipes) and a fishing pole that’s definitely getting used to its full potential. The only time you’ll see me abandon by AC is to indulge in these two simple summer pleasures.
In celebration of two of my favorite summer pleasures, I give you this simple recipe: Sriracha lime Salmon. It really is one of the simplest dishes you can have on your weekly dinner rotation. It’s light and healthy, it’s easy, it pairs wonderfully with summer veggies like zucchini, peppers and squash. We’re in the peak of salmon season right now, so head on down to your local fish market and load up; nothing compares to fresh, wild salmon.
I know what you’re thinking: “Preparing fresh fish is hard!! There’s work involved!! All those little bones!!” I know, sweetie. There, there. But if I can do it, you can too. Growing up, my dad was an avid fisherman. He would go on an annual salmon fishing trip with the guys every year and come home with pounds and pounds of fresh salmon. I can’t recall if he personally filleted, skinned and de-boned the salmon himself, but admittedly, I was slightly embarrassed when after I got the fillets on my cutting board with the oven preheated and sauce mixed and ready to go, I realized that I have never seen this done before. And not only have I never seen it done before, I don’t even own a fillet knife (you can only imagine how excited I’m getting to register for wedding gifts). So, I present to you, Bobby Flay:
I mean, who doesn't trust Bobby Flay? I don’t want to tell you how I managed to get the skin off the filet, but I will tell you that a pair of tweezers works wonderfully for pulling out the little fish bones if you don’t have pliers (again, REALLY excited for this wedding registry business). After I prepped the fish, the rest was relatively quick and painless. Put the fillets in a baking dish, slather on the sauce and throw it in the oven. In less than 15 minutes, you’re ready to eat! For the sides, I picked up some corn on the cob, zucchini, red peppers and sweet onion from the farmers market and gave them a quick boil and sauté (the produce is all from Swank Farms, a little local farm from my hometown in Hollister, CA. Check them out here). If you like your salmon a little on the spicier side, add a little extra Sriracha on top for the last 5 minutes of the bake. Now, pour yourself a chilled glass of pinot grigio, plop yourself in front of the AC and enjoy.
Sriracha Lime Salmon
1 ¼ lbs wild king salmon fillets, skin removed and de-boned
Juice and zest of 1/2 lime
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup (grade A or B)
1 1/2 teaspoons tsp Sriracha sauce
1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
Coarsely chopped cilantro
Heat oven to 425°. In a bowl, whisk together the lime juice, lime zest, maple syrup, sriracha and salt. Place salmon in a baking dish lined with parchment paper or foil; pour lime-siriacha-maple sauce over the top. Place in oven and bake until cooked through and flaky, about 12-15 minutes. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and serve hot. Enjoy!