I’ve talked before about how we try to eat fish on a regular basis. This pretty much means tilapia and salmon. Salmon has tons of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, and vitamin D; however, you want to stick with wild salmon rather than farmed whenever possible, because farmed salmon may contain high levels of dioxins and has a lower omega-3 content.
I’ve also posted about how I love to grill out when the weather is nice. I’ve never done cedar plank salmon on the grill, until now. I guess I always thought of it as a daunting task. I actually bought some cedar planks for this purpose two, maybe three(!) years ago, but never used them. I finally decided to give it a go, and I’m so glad I did. It was really easy and extremely, mouth wateringly delicious. The cedar gave the salmon a nice smokey flavor, but it wasn’t overwhelming.
The recipe I used was one by Bobby Flay and it only calls for three ingredients – the salmon, dijon mustard, and brown sugar. And salt and pepper, but I’m not counting those because those are a given, right? Ok, now, I’m not really what you would call a mustard lover. I tolerate it if it’s masked in recipes, but I never eat it as a condiment, and I rarely eat it as straight-up as it is here. I have to tell you though, this. was. good. I mean really, really good. I strongly encourage you to give it a try.
Now for the cedar, you can’t just run out to your local hardware store and pick up whatever cedar they have lying around. The cedar has to be untreated. I imagine they might have something you could use at the hardware store if you ask. But I found mine right at the grocery store. I probably overpaid for them, but I didn’t really care (if you know me personally, you know how huge this is) because then I was sure they were food safe. Oh, and you have to soak the wood in water for at least an hour before putting it on the grill so it doesn’t burn up.
I can’t wait to try other variations of cedar plank grilled salmon! Watch for more to come!
Cedar Plank Grilled Salmon
- 1 cedar plank, big enough for your pieces of salmon
- 2 salmon filets
- salt and pepper
- 4 tablespoons dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
Soak cedar plank in water for at least an hour, then remove from water and pat dry.
Remove the skin from the salmon, rinse, and pat dry with paper towels. Salt and pepper with both sides. Lay the salmon on the cedar (on what was skin side down). Spread mustard over top of filets and sprinkle brown sugar over top. Gently pat down so the sugar doesn’t fall off.
Place the empty plank on the grill and put the lid on for 3 minutes. (It will start to smoke.) Turn the plank over and place the fish on top in a spot on the grill that’s about medium-high heat for 20-30 minutes. We left ours on for 20 minutes, rotating it 4 times, and it turned out perfectly. The internal temperature was about 148 degrees, so it was well done but still very juicy. Perfect, really. Bobby’s recipe said to take it off at 135 degrees, but I think that would not have been done enough for us. Cooking time will depend on how hot your grill is, so keep an eye on it. If the plank starts to catch fire, mist it with water or move it to a cooler spot on the grill.