After a Fourth of July weekend full of endless noshing, Farmer Dan and I wasted no time jumping back on the healthy bandwagon and returning to lighter summer fare.
One of our favorite meals to eat in the summer is grilled salmon with some variation of fruit relish. We’ve prepared grilled salmon with a mango-kiwi relish (just combine 1/2 cup diced peeled mango, ½ cup cubed peeled kiwifruit, ¼ cup chopped cilantro and ¼ cup fresh orange juice), a mango-pineapple salsa (mix together 1 cup diced fresh pineapple, 1 diced mango, ½ cup chopped red sweet pepper, ¼ cup chopped red onion, 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, 1 finely chopped jalapeno, 1 teaspoon finely shredded lime peel and ¼ teaspoon salt) and this refreshing tomato-peach salsa (shown below).
Using these versatile, sweet and tangy fruit relishes is an easy way to switch up your meals without learning new techniques. If you have leftovers, these fruit relishes are equally delicious atop fish tacos, grilled chicken or a spinach salad (but if you’re anything like us, there won’t be leftovers!) And now that local fruit clubs are starting to deliver those gorgeous Georgia peaches, you’ll find this is a great time to try this tasty tomato-peach salsa.
While salmon pairs well with grains like quinoa, couscous or wild rice, if you’re looking to add some green to your plate, look no further than fresh asparagus. Our favorite way to prepare asparagus is to simply roast it with olive oil and salt and pepper. It’s also wonderful if you want to squeeze fresh lemon juice on top of the spears, add freshly-grated Parmesan cheese or toasted pine nuts (or all three!)
A few tips: When preparing asparagus, make sure to snap off the woody ends of the asparagus with your hands. Using your hands rather than a knife allows you to find that perfect breaking point where the woody end and the fresh asparagus spear begins. Once trimmed, coat generously with olive oil and salt and pepper and allow to roast at 425 for 12-18 minutes, or until tender.
For perfectly grilled salmon (we often use skinless 5-ounce portions for the sake of convenience), make sure to clean your grill grates extremely well before you begin and spray your grill generously with oil. We also rub olive oil directly on the salmon prior to seasoning to keep it from sticking and to help the seasoning stick. Once placed on high heat, don’t touch it for five minutes until you have good grill marks, and then flip it over and keep cooking until it starts to feel and look like it could flake. If you’re grilling salmon with skin, grill skin-side down and let it crisp, then flip.
Finish this relaxing summer meal with a nice pinot gris or a lighter red like pinot noir and enjoy.
Grilled Salmon with Tomato-Peach Salsa
1 cup chopped, peeled peach
¾ cup quartered cherry tomatoes
¼ cup thinly vertically-sliced red onion
3 Tablespoon small fresh mint leaves, torn
3 Tablespoon small fresh basil leaves, julienned
2 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon honey
1 jalapeno pepper, diced
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
4 (6-ounce) wild Alaska king salmon fillets (or sockeye)
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preheat grill to high heat.
Combine first nine ingredients in a small bowl. Sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon salt; toss gently. Season fillets with remaining ¾ tsp. salt and black pepper. Place fillets on a grill rack coated generously with cooking spray, and grill for 10 minutes, turning after 5 minutes. Serve with tomato-peach salsa.
Source: Modified slightly from Cooking Light magazine, July 2011, p. 16.
One bundle fresh asparagus
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Trim asparagus by taking the end of the asparagus and bending until it breaks.
On a tin foil-covered rimmed sheet pan, place trimmed asparagus in a single layer. Generously drizzle olive oil on asparagus and roll until evenly coated. Season well with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bake for 12-18 minutes or until tender.