hot smoked salmon with a fresh dill sauce

ha. This is a joke. I sincerely, from the bottom of my heart, apologize for the complete lack of content the past few weeks. All I can say is that life got in the way...

mesquite wood chips

I unfortunately cannot say that I made this unbelievable meal over this rather gloomy and cold Memorial Day Weekend. I have actually been holding on to it for a few weeks now. But it is worth the wait. I pray to God that you like seafood, because it will be a shame if you choose not to give this recipe a try! It's comes from Ina Garten's barefoot contessa foolproof cookbook.


Grilling is something that I cannot say I have mastered. At all. In fact, my father does the majority of the grilling in the house. My goal for this summer is this: to master the art of grilling. I even purchased The Grilling Book and plan on forcing myself to become a kick-ass griller by summer's end! Until then, I will take notes on what my dad does and will slowly begin taking over.

hot smoked salmon

Today's post is just highlighting the salmon and fresh dill sauce recipe. There are two more recipes that I will be sharing with you this week, but those will be coming later! So keep your eyes open!

Until next time...happy eating!

hot smoked salmon

1/4 cup granulated sugar 1/4 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed Kosher salt 1 tablespoon coarsely ground black peppercorns 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest (2 lemons) 2 pounds King salmon fillets, skin on (whole or cut into serving pieces) 3 cups wood chips, such as oak, hickory, or mesquite Charcoal 1 large, flat disposable foil pan fresh dill sauce, for serving (recipe follows)

  1. The night before serving, combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, 2 tablespoons salt, the peppercorns, and lemon zest in a small bowl. Place the salmon fillets skin side down on a large flat ceramic or glass dish. Spread the mixture evenly on top of the salmon. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
  2. At least 1 1/2 hours before you plan to cook the salmon, soak the wood chips in water.
  3. Thirty minutes before you're ready to cook, heat the charcoal. Place a double layer of coals on one side of the grill, light them, and allow them to burn until the coals are gray on the outside. (I used a charcoal chimney to light the coals.) Sprinkle half the soaked wood chips on the hot coals (there will be lots of smoke). On the other side of the grill, place the foil pan and pour in 1 cup water. Place the cooking grate over the coals and pan.
  4. Scrap most of the sugar mixture off the salmon and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Place the salmon skin side down on the side of the grill directly over the foil pan. Put the lid on the grill, making sure the top and bottom vents are open. Smoke the salmon for 10 minutes. Add the remaining wood chips directly on the coals and cook for 5 to 10 more minutes, depending on the thickness fo the salmon, until it's firm to the touch and barely cooked. Don't over cook the salmon or it will be dry!
  5. Transfer the salmon to a clean platter and immediately cover tightly with aluminum foil. Allow to rest for 10 minutes. Remove and discard the skin, if desired, and serve hot, at room temperature, or cold with the fresh dill sauce.

fresh dill sauce

1/2 cup good mayonnaise, such as Hellmann's 1/2 cup sour cream 1/2 cup plain yogurt 2 tablespoons cream cheese, at room temperature 1/2 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts (4 scallions) 1/2 cup minced fresh dill 1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 1 cup seeded, grated hothouse cucumber

  1. Place the mayonnaise, sour cream, yogurt, cream cheese, scallions, dill, parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, 2 tablespoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Purée for a few seconds, until mixed well.
  2. Add the cucumber and purée for another few seconds, until combined.
  3. Pour into a container and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to develop.