In our family, we take advantage of the short Wisconsin summer by grilling a lot of fish. The marinade and glaze recipe shown here is a classic Asian-inspired reduction that allows the flavor profile to intensify as it thickens. Ensure that you take time to marinate the fillets for at least one hour. Ideally, I’ll leave them sit for 2-3 hours. From my experience, grilling on a cedar plank is the only way to produce consistent results with no flareups or scorching. It comes out perfect every time. This is a family favorite — Enjoy!
2-4 8 oz. fresh salmon fillets, with skin left on
1/4 cup water
2 tbs. soy sauce
2 tbs. packed brown sugar
2 tbs. grated fresh ginger
1/2 large shallot, minced
Juice of 1/2 squeezed lemon
1/4 cup honey
2 tbs. butter
Pinch of dried red chili flakes
Cedar plank(s) and real wood charcoal for grilling
Combine the marinade/glaze ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Reduce until thickened and bubbly, about 5-6 minutes. Set aside until cooled.
Rinse the salmon fillets in cold water and pat dry. Place skin side down in a shallow baking dish or large ziplock bag. Add one-half of the marinade to the salmon and reserve the rest.
Cover the salmon and refrigerate for at least one hour so the flavors have time to set.
Prepare an outdoor charcoal grill with real wood charcoal set to each side for indirect heat. Light and allow it to come up to temperature; the coals should be nearly white-hot.
Place the salmon fillets skin side down on a cedar plank and carefully place the plank in the center of the grilling grate, ensuring the coals are on each side, the length of the plank. Quickly brush on part of the remaining glaze and cover the grill (fully vented). Grill for a total of 12-15 minutes, adding more glaze around 7 minutes. Using an instant-read digital thermometer, remove the fish when the internal temperature of the thickest part reaches 130 degrees F. The fish should easily flake apart.
Note: The best cedar planks I’ve found are from Costco. You can purchase a set of ten for $30 as shown here — but my wife found them on sale for $20. They can be reused if thoroughly cleaned and dried between use. Use only hot dish soap water and a scrub brush.