What do we do?
We swim, swim, swim!”
I am ecstatic that the storyline of Finding Nemo does not feature a salmon, because I’m pretty sure I’d feel forever guilty for eating, and enjoying immensely, a beloved children’s character. (Don’t get me started on Flounder from the Little Mermaid).
Salmon is an incredibly versatile fish thanks to its unique flavor. It is strong enough to stand up well to hoisin sauce and spice, yet a simple citrus and sugar glaze can accentuate its more delicate features. This glaze we use typically when we can get our hands on fresh wild Sockeye salmon. Since it’s a little more expensive than the usual salmon filets we purchase, I think it is important to really highlight the flavor of the fish, and let that be the star of the show.
I was not sure if simply broiling the fish would cook it all the way through before burning the sugar, but the recipe worked perfectly. The sugar in the citrus glaze caramelizes and crisps up underneath the broiler, providing a nice balance to the perfectly cooked, flaky salmon.
From Alton Brown via FoodNetwork.com
1 side, skin-on, sockeye salmon, 1 1/2 to 2 pounds, pin bones removed
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons lemon zest
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Position a rack in the oven 3 inches from the broiler. Line a half sheet pan with aluminum foil and place the salmon on the pan.
Place the sugar, zest, salt, and pepper into the bowl of a small food processor and process for 1 minute or until well combined. Evenly spread the mixture onto the salmon and allow to sit for 45 minutes, at room temperature.
Turn the oven on to the high broiler setting for 2 minutes. After 2 minutes, place the salmon into the oven and broil for 6 to 8 minutes or until the thickest part of the fish reaches an internal temperature of 131 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove the salmon from the oven and allow to rest, uncovered, for 8 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately.