I am a fair weather griller and I admit it (sometimes). I wish I liked to grill all year long, but I just don’t like cooking outside when it’s cold, snowy, and rainy. If I’m making a recipe that needs to be grilled, and the weather is bad, I will ask my California born husband to do the grilling. He doesn’t love grilling outside when it’s cold, but will do so, reluctantly, for the sake of our dinner.
I should mention that we live in Minnesota and our "window" of nice weather is relatively short. When the snow melts and the weather gets a little nicer or above 50°. I am ready to grill outside!
For my first grilled dinner of the season, I decided to make Salmon Fillets with Orange Basil Butter. My family likes salmon and I am always looking for different ways to cook it and I thought the flavors in this recipe would be a hit with everyone.
To begin, put the salmon on a plate or cutting board and set it aside while you prepare the other ingredients. Preheat your grill or start the charcoal. I like to cook salmon at a High heat.
Next, make the butter sauce. Prepare and gather your ingredients. You will need….
Butter - measure then melt in a small bowl.
Roll the basil into a bunch, and finely chop.
Orange zest – Use a zester or a Microplaner for your orange zest. Scrape the outer layer of the orange for the best zest and do not scrape into the white part. You may need more than one orange to get enough zest. Don’t worry you won’t waste the oranges once you have zested them. Use the juice for this recipe, or peel them and eat them.
Lastly, you will need orange juice. Gather the zest, juice, and basil and you will be ready to finish the butter mix.
Add all butter mix ingredients together and stir.
Remove three tablespoons of butter mix and set aside. You will add this to the fish once it’s cooked. Brush the remaining mix onto the salmon fillets.
Place the salmon fillet onto the grill. If your fillet has skin on it, the skin-side should be on the bottom. I like cooking salmon fillets with the skin on, I think the flavor is better and it doesn’t dry out as easily. Keep an eye on the fish while you are grilling it and watch for flare-ups. The butter mixture and the fat in the salmon drip into the grill, causing some flare-ups. Keep a water bottle next to you to put out the flare-ups, so the fillet does not get charred or dried out.
Once your salmon is done cooking, the internal temp reaches 145°F or the edges flake easily with a fork, remove it from the grill and let it rest on a plate for 5 minutes. If your fillets have skin on them, remove it once the fillet is cool enough to handle.
Put each fillet on a plate and top each fillet with a spoonful of reserved butter sauce. Add a little extra chopped basil and the sliced almonds, if desired, before serving. I didn’t add almonds because I can’t eat nuts.
I was glad I braved the elements to make this recipe. Actually, the temperature outside was 60°F and sunny. It was a perfect spring meal and my family loved it. I served it with salad, crusty bread and asparagus. Next time, maybe I will grill the asparagus too, but only if the weather is nice!
Try Salmon Fillets with Orange Basil Butter the next time you want to grill, and make sure to come back and rate and review the recipe.