Let's talk about two very special Alaska things: berries and fish. For centuries, Alaskans have utilized both as mainstays to a healthy diet, even if they didn't know it at the time. Cranberries, crowberries, watermelon berries, salmon berries, and, of course, blueberries. This has been a fantastic year for blueberries, so why not combine this bounty with another Alaska resource; salmon. Reds or kings are best for this recipe.
Oh, and while I'm at it, I should mention that my salmon came from the good folks at Catch 49, a cool new co-op opportunity that allows the purchase of shares for such wonderful products as wild Alaska salmon. So check them out HERE.
1/2 fillet of red or king salmon
Large pinch of salt
Large pinch pepper
4 sprigs thyme
2 shallots, thinly sliced
4 TBS butter
2 cups blueberries
2 cups white wine
2 TBS honey
2 TBS white wine vinegar
1 stick cinnamon
1 TBS butter
- In a small saucepan, add shallots, wine, vinegar, thyme, cinnamon, and a small pinch of salt. Reduce until the liquid has all but evaporated, approximately 15-20 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- When reduced, add blueberries, half the butter, the honey, and cook until the berries are soft and the sauce turns pink.
- Heat grill to medium and make a foil “boat” to contain the salmon.- Place foil on grill and add remaining butter. When melted, place salmon in the foil boat and spoon blueberry mixture over the salmon, reserving just a bit of sauce for the presentation.
- Grill for about 10 minutes or until the salmon flakes easily. - Plate salmon and drizzle with the remaining sauce.
There are a lot of potatoes in this world, all of them good. But some, like Yukon Gold, are just better. Yukons are smaller, with yellow flesh (hence the name), and a slightly-sweet, smooth flavor. Mashed with lots of butter and the right seasonings, they're simply sublime. As harvest season goes full bore, perhaps you've found yourself with an abundance of these little beauties and wonder what else can be done with their deliciousness.
Behold the smashed Yukon Gold tater with hints of orange and garlic; the perfect sweet-tart combination topped off with bacon bits. Be sure to leave the skin on these potatoes for a rustic look and lots of vitamins (your mother was right!).
Smashed Potatoes with Orange and Garlic
2 lbs Yukon Gold Potatoes, quartered
6 cloves garlic, chopped
½ stick butter
1 cup heavy whipping cream
4 oz orange juice
Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat a large pot of water and bring to a boil. Rinse and quarter potatoes, leaving the skin on.
- Place potatoes in pot and boil until they can be pierced easily with a table knife. Drain pot and leave potatoes in.
- Chop garlic and set aside.
- Add your butter, garlic, and half the whipping cream to the potato pot.
- With a table knife or spatula, use a slicing motion break down the potatoes. When a desired texture (i.e. 'smash') is achieved, add salt and pepper to taste, and stir in the rest of the cream - a little at a time. You don’t want to turn the smashed potatoes into a gooey paste.
- Add orange juice, mixing carefully, and adjust with bacon bits, salt, and pepper to taste.
- Garnish with parsley and serve hot.
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