Tag Archives: salmon

Wild Washington Troll-Caught Marbled Salmon

I recently found myself in the interesting position of attending my first food publicity event. I’ve never been to one before, one where I get to mingle with the hoi paloi of the Seattle food scene. As I am not a good mingler, I found myself with a glass of cabernet and several files about Washington Trolled Chinook Salmon – the purpose of the event.

Up here in the Pacific Northwest, and probably throughout the country, we wait with baited breath for Copper River Salmon, based out of Alaska. Tourists, when they get to Seattle, look forward to sitting down at a restaurant to be served the famous fish. Salmon is a big deal up here, and the fact that Alaskan Salmon gets the fair amount of press, while Washington Salmon gets little or none…well, let’s just say that more press equals more money. Hence, the event.

There are several reasons why Washington Salmon market hasn’t had the luck that the Alaskan market has, most of it due to issues in the past. Quality was a major issue, an issue that has most certainly been addressed. Keep it cold and keep it clean is the mantra that has been heard throughout Neah Bay. The better the fish, the more money that the fishermen will get for their catch.

If the Washington Marbled Chinook that I had at this event (cooked under the direction of Lark’s Jonathan Sundstrom), then Washington Salmon is on the upswing. And yes, the Salmon is marbled, with both red and white flesh within.

It’s this marbling that’s both a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because it makes the salmon ‘regionally distinct’. That means that this kind of fish can’t be found anywhere else in the world. It also helps that it tastes pretty damn good.

The curse is due to the fact the it’s odd look makes distributors and market buyers hesitant to put it under the glass and lights. But if you want proof where the Chinook is going, several restaurants in the Seattle area are now using it on their menu (some calling it Washington Salmon, others not) and there’s a rumor going around that some restaurants in Chicago are also in on the secret.

And, to make me smile even more, the salmon is fished by the Washington Trollers Association and the Makah tribe. Or to put it into other terms, these folks are artisinal, and they are using sustainable practices in the catching of the fish. What’s not to love?

Many thanks to Amy Grondin of the Pacific Marine Conservation Council, who invited me to the event and for talking with me about the salmon. I have no problem in recommending this fish to anyone. If anyone in the Seattle area is interested, you can find the Marbled Salmon at the Ballard Farmer’s Market, Ray’s Boathouse Cafe and Catering, and the 35th St. Bistro.

tags technorati : Salmon Washington Salmon Chinook

Notes for a perfect Bagel and Lox

I’m working on another piece for a publication, ans I’d thought I’d share my notes here with y’all. Here’s what I look for in bagel and lox.

Bagel; The foundation of the dish. If you have a bad bagel, everything else falls apart, regardless of how good they are.

The bagel should be fresh. Any bagels older than a day are a tough sell. The bagel shouldn’t be gummy, nor so hard that they reform as caulk in your digestive system (Lender bagels, I’m looking at you).

The type of bagel is debatable, in my opinion, the plainer the better, although poppy seed bagels work very well.

Lox: Sweet, smooth, a bit salty and very silky in texture. Grainy lox should be avoided. Think “sushi-grade” salmon (at least in regards to looks) and you’ll have a good idea on what it should look like.

Do not skimp on the lox. 2 slices work well per side (unless you make this into a sandwich…more on that below).

Tomatoes: For the love of god, this is where most places fail in regard to making a good dish. If you haaave to have tomatoes, they should be fresh and flavorful. One slice is plenty. If you can taste more tomato than lox, then you have too much tomato.

However, it has been mentioned by some that tomatoes are a sin on bagels with lox. Proceed at your own speed.

Cream Cheese: Sadly, Philly Cream cheese is almost a standard for Bagel and Lox. There are so many other better tasting cream cheeses, even Neufchatel would work.

Regardless, the cream cheese should be enough to provide texture and a bit of the bitter, salty and even acrid taste that cream cheese is known for. However, cream cheese is not icing! Again, if I can taste more cream cheese than lox, then the bagel has problems.

Onions: Red onions only please. A bit sharper to the taste and it looks nice. Rings or chopped doesn’t matter. Fresh does. Pickled? Get in the back of the line.

Capers: Yes please, but not too many. Oh, and no brine from the capers.

Lettuce: No…don’t do it unless it’s a garnish. Iceberg lettuce will get you a special place in hell.

Sandwich Style: I do not discount those places who prefer to serve Lox and Bagels as a sandwich. However, serving each side individually is preferred.

Technorati Tags: Food, Critiques, Bagels, Bagels Lox

Smoked Salmon Frittata

  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 2 oz. Smoked Salmon
  • 3/4 cup Spinack
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/8 C. milk
  • 1/8 t. salt
  • 1/8 C. Gruyere cheese – diced

Pre-heat broiler

Heat small frying pan, and melt butter. Add Smoked salmon and allow to heat. Add Spinach.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the eggs, milk, and salt. Beat well. Pour the egg mixture over the salmon. Cover and cook over low heat for 7 – 9 minutes, or until the center is set.

Sprinkle the cheese over the top of the frittata. Broil the frittata until the cheese is melted.

Let the frittata set for 5 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve.

Serves 1-2

IMBB 6.0: Grilled Salmon and Wasabi Mayo on Foccacia


I got the inspiration for this recipe from a meal I had at the B & O Espresso the other night. A simple sandwich, with both the fish and then the whole sandwich grilled for flavoring. Yum!

  • 1 lb fillet of sockeye salmon
  • 3 slices of non-sharp cheese (I used a Dutch Leerdammer Alpine)
  • Spinach
  • Wasabi Mayonnaise
  • Foccacia Bread

Heat up your grill. Oil the salmon, and place it on the grill. Cook on one side for 5-7 minutes, turn over and cook until done on the other (4-5 minutes).

While salmon is grilling, cut foccacia in half, lightly oil and place on grill to toast. Spread mayonnaise on top piece, and cheese on bottom. Allow cheese to lightly melt. Place cooked salmon on cheese, Top with spinach, and place top piece of foccacia. Plate, quarter and serve!

Sweet Baked Salmon on Rice


In the course of my research, I came across a package of Forbidden Rice. Back in the day, it was the rice that the Emperors kept for themselves, but now it’s often known as simply black rice. The rice itself does have a darker and …well.. nuttier taste than your whites, and leaves a dark violet rice broth once done cooking.

I thought it cool and unique that I had this in my pantry selection, but I’ll be damned if I knew what I could or should make with it. I then stumbled across the below recipe, and added a few ideas of my own to it. It turned out quite well, although I sort of wished that the sauce would have turned out a little thicker. But it was VERY tasty.

  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cups sliced green onions
  • 1/4 walnuts (optional)
  • 1 pound salmon
  • 1 cup forbidden rice
  • 1 1/2 cup water

Mix the maple syrup, soy sauce, garlic, salt, and pepper in a baking dish. Place salmon in a shallow baking dish, and coat with the maple syrup mixture. Cover the dish, and marinate salmon in the refrigerator 30 minutes, turning once.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

While waiting for over to heat, boil Water in a sauce pan, adding rice when boiling is achieved. Lower heat and cook rice as directed on package.

Beore putting fish in over, top with walnuts. Cover the baking dishwith aluminum foil and place in the preheated oven. Bbake salmon 20 minutes, or until easily flaked with a fork. Serve on top of cooked rice. Garnish with green onions.