Happy day after Thanksgiving!! Before I forget, if you find yourself post-Thanksgiving with an abundance of cranberries that didn’t make it into the sauce, you must bake these Cranberry-Pecan Muffins from Cooks Illustrated. They’re seriously the best muffins I’ve ever made. The toasted pecans are so good and with the tart cranberry and a streusel topping – yum!!
Now back to the post at-hand. Everyone should have at least one go-to, easy, healthy, delicious weeknight meal that they could make over and over again and still not tire of. Barbecued Roasted Salmon is mine. Since discovering it in the pages of Cooking Light magazine over 10 years ago (oh, how back in the day I anxiously awaited its monthly arrival!) it’s been in my regular weeknight dinner repertoire. Salmon can be dry, but marinating it for an hour in pineapple juice and lemon juice keeps it moist. Another tip is to take it out of the oven when there is still a bit of dark pink in the center – that will keep it from tasting too dry as well.
I try to keep all the ingredients in my pantry, except for the salmon…that would be gross. That I keep in the freezer in case I don’t have time to get it fresh at the grocery store. But the rest of the ingredients are most likely on-hand. The exception is probably pineapple juice, though I’m sure there are people partial to pineapple juice out there. My family isn’t, so rather than opening (and most likely wasting) a big jug of pineapple juice, I buy it in juice box form. And those can be stocked in the pantry:)
So fire up your oven….just because it’s getting cold outside and grills are being retired, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the taste of BBQ.
Barbeque Roasted Salmon (makes 4 servings)
¼ cup / 60 ml pineapple juice
1 lemon, zested and juiced (keep zest and juice separate)
1 large salmon filet or 4 individual filets, about 1.5 lbs (680 g)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
4 teaspoons chili powder
¾ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Combine pineapple juice, lemon juice and salmon in a large zip-lock bag. Seal and marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour, turning occasionally.
Preheat oven to 400º F (200º C). Lightly grease a medium roasting pan (e.g. 9”x13” or 23cm x 33cm pan). Combine lemon zest, brown sugar, chili powder, cumin, salt and cinnamon) in a small bowl.
After 1 hour, remove fish from bag and discard marinade. Place fish in the roasting pan and rub the top of the fish with the brown sugar mixture. If fish is of uneven thickness, tuck any thin ends under to ensure even baking. Bake for 12 minutes or until almost cooked in the center at the thickest part. The center will be firm with just a line of uncooked salmon in the very center. (I peek by inserting the tip of a small knife. Alternately you can use a thermometer and cook until it reaches an internal temperature of 130º F (55º C)). If using a single, large filet, cut into 4 individual servings. Remove any skin off the bottom and serve.