Elliott’s Oyster House
The technique of cooking salmon on wooden planks naturally evolved in the Pacific Northwest, where both fish and forests are abundant. At Elliott’s Oyster House, the kitchen uses alder wood planks to infuse wild salmon with a fragrant smokiness. The restaurant purchases alder planks from a lumber store and cuts them to fit its ovens.
4 filets fresh king salmon (6-8 oz. each)
¼ cup olive oil
¾ lb. brown sugar
½ cup Paprika
10 tbsp. kosher salt, kosher
2 Tbsp. Thyme, herb fresh chopped
1 tbsp. coarsely ground pepper
1 tbsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. chili powder
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
¼ tsp. ground white pepper
Smoked tomato beurre blanc
1 Roma tomato, finely diced
½ red onion, finely diced
½ tsp. kosher salt, divided
1/8 tsp. fresh cracked black pepper
3 tbsp. white wine
2 tsp. minced shallots
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1½ tsp. heavy cream
½ lb. unsalted butter, cut in 1-in. cubes
1. Prepare rub: In bowl, combine all ingredients. Toss until well mixed. Store in tightly covered container until ready to use.
2. Prepare smoked tomato beurre blanc: Soak alder chips for 20 minutes. Drain and place on aluminum foil. Prepare an outdoor grill or smoker. Place foil package of chips over heat source; heat until chips begin to glow and smoke.
3. Turn off grill and place the mixed, diced tomatoes, red onion, ¼ tsp. salt and pepper on a cookie sheet over top of the alder chips. Cover and let smoke for 20 minutes. Remove and chill.
4. Prepare beurre blanc: In small saucepan over medium heat, combine wine, shallots and lemon juice; cook until reduced by half. Strain liquid, discarding shallots. Return strained liquid to saucepan and stir in cream; cook 1 minute.
5. Working on and off the heat, whisk in butter in small pieces until mixture forms an emulsion. Stir in remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and smoked tomato mixture. Hold sauce warm in preheated thermal container or double boiler.
6. Prepare salmon: Rub both sides of alder plank with olive oil. Preheat plank in 450 F oven for 15 minutes. Remove plank from oven. Brush both sides of salmon filets with olive oil; coat evenly with 1 teaspoon rub.
7. Place filets, presentation-side down, on plank. Place planked salmon in preheated oven and roast for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and turn salmon over. Return to oven and roast approximately 6 to 7 minutes longer or just until salmon loses its translucency.
8. To serve, remove salmon to warm serving plate and ladle about 2 tablespoons smoked tomato beurre blanc diagonally across the filets.
Photo courtesy of Elliott’s Oyster House / Suzi Pratt