Friday, January 20, 2012

Grilled Salmon with Basil Lemon White Sauce

Growing up in the Northwest, I was spoiled by the amazing salmon.  Rich, full of nutrients, and by far my favorite fish, having eaten so much great salmon makes me pretty picky about salmon.  Additionally, after living in Alaska for 2 summers, and actually catching it on my own (an awesome adventure), I repeat....I'm pretty picky about salmon.

So I was pretty thrilled to see Coho salmon, wild caught at Whole Foods for $13.99/lb (please, don't do farmed's often dyed, and really one of the least good farmed fish for you...go for wild caught, and insist on knowing if it really is - retailers like Whole Foods is a good bet if you can't look the fisherman in the face).

And since this was a rare night with access to a grill (we are not lucky to have our own boooo because we have no outdoor space) I decided that salmon would be an awesome choice.  And I decided to experiment with a roux based sauce with white wine, to make it fish appropriate.  And our friends and Brett enjoyed it.

Just remember that salmon doesn't take long to grill, so make the sauce way before making the salmon.  You can also do this pan grilled or bake.  Any way that you want to make salmon.  It's a forgiving fish.

1 lb salmon
2 T butter
2 T flour
3 C white wine
4 T lemon (about 1 large lemon, but can be added more to taste)
1 t salt (can be adjusted to taste)
1 t pepper (can be adjusted to taste)
3 T freshly chopped basil

In a saucepan, heat up 2 T of butter on medium heat.

Once the butter has melted, add the flour 1 T at a time, whisking well.  Add the wine 1 C of a time once the flour has melted.

Whisk well and frequently.  Add lemon, still whisking frequently, and then add the remaining ingredients.

Reduce the heat to medium low and let simmer for at least 15-20 minutes.  If the sauce gets too thick, add more wine (no more than 1/4 C at a time) or more lemon (no more than 1 T at a time) and continually taste the sauce.  It should taste a bit like wine and lemon, but it will mellow once it hits the salmon.

Once the sauce has begun to just simmer, put the salmon skin down on the grill.  Once the white spots start coming out on the salmon, assess to make sure it's cooking the thick part through, but you can remove when it's pink.  Do not overcook the salmon!  It will continue to cook once off the grill.

You can cut the salmon into about 4 portions and it will be plenty sufficient for one person.  Serve with about 2-3 T of the sauce on the salmon.  You can freeze any of the rest of the sauce if you want, and enjoy!!

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