I was born and raised in Montreal, Quebec and naturally when thinking about typically Canadian food the first that came to mind are Quebecois dishes like tourtiere and onion soup baked in individual bowls topped with stringy melted cheese - both too hot to make on a muggy summer day and definitely winter dishes. I also thought about poutine - french fries with gravy and curds - gross in any season, in my humble opinion. Since I love the idea of Taste Canada I tried to think of something both Canadian and summery.
I decided to focus on Canadian ingredients, like Atlantic Salmon filets marinated in maple syrup (and some other goodies) and serve it with a salad of local mixed greens and Ontario strawberries, followed, of course by more strawberries while they're still around. I like them naked, right off the farm - the strawberries, I mean. My daughter's favorite way is a bowl of sliced strawberries with a splash of freshly squeezed orange juice and freshly chopped mint. My husband keeps asking for more of the super strawberry tart.
Maple Syrup & Bourbon-Glazed BBQ Salmon
From Every Kitchen Tells Its Stories
Hands-on time: 5-10 minutes
Marinate: 15-30 minutes MAX!!!
Total Cooking time: 15-20 minutes
8 (6 oz) salmon fillets (1” thick) preferrably with skin on
Cooking spray (for broiler/BBQ rack)
1 cup maple syrup or brown sugar, packed
6 tbsp (1/3 cup) bourbon
¼ cup soy sauce
2 tbsp fresh lime juice (1 lime)
2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
2 cloves garlic, crushed
¼ tsp Pepper
1. To Marinate: Combine maple syrup, bourbon, soy sauce, lime juice, ginger, pepper and garlic in a large zip-lock plastic bag. Add salmon fillets, seal bag and marinate in fridge for 30 minutes, turning the bag once. Remove fillets from bag and set aside the marinade. DO NOT MARINATE FOR LONGER THAN 30 MINUTES
2. Preheat BBQ, broiler, or oven to 400°F
3. To BBQ or broil: Place fillets skin side down on broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Broil 11 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.
4. To roast: Line a baking dish with tin foil or parchment paper. Place fish skin side down in center of oven and bake for 20 minutes or so, until fish flakes easily.
5. In the meantime: bring the rest of the marinade to a boil in a small saucepan on medium high heat on top of stove. Reduce to a little more than half. Allow to simmer while fish is cooking. Use to baste fish and serve as sauce.
Tips & Variations
For BBQ version (my favourite), it’s great on a soaked cedar plank, although the cedar can sometimes overpower the sublte flavours of the marinade. I really like the plank for fish that's cooked plain and served with a squeeze of lime or lemon juice, some freshly ground pepper and a pinch of salt. The cedar smoking makes the fish taste really amazing.
Soak board for one hour and then place on BBQ rack. Let sit for a few minutes covered to get the smoking going.
Add salmon and cook over medium heat until done. It should take anywhere from 10-15 minutes, depending on the size of the fillet.
This is great served with mixed greens for those really hot nights or roasted asparagus spritzed with lemon juice along with new potatoes (roasted or boiled) tossed with fresh herbs.