I am this excited to share tonight’s dinner of Maple Grilled Salmon and Cauliflower Rice with you!!
But first, hi. How was your weekend? I completed the sloth certification course I started in Jamaica by unplugging and taking it totally easy this weekend, including spending QT with the fam both Friday and Sunday, and taking a gasp, NAP on Saturday!
It was terrific.
Oh, I guess Ben and I attended a friend’s “stock the bar” party Saturday night, where I tried cake vodka for the first time. It tasted just like a vanilla birthday cake with vanilla icing, and was pretty much the greatest thing ever. I think it was 3 Olives brand. Have you tried?
At any rate, thanks to the R&R I’m feeling refreshed and re-energized today, and ready for the busy week ahead. A feeling that was only enhanced by the revitalizing 3.5 mile run I took this afternoon in the beautiful weather we’ve had today. It’s the first time I’ve gone out since before Jamaica, eep!
By the way, I created a new “Workout Log” page under “Workouts” to share my daily workouts. Sometimes it feels strange to be all, hey, here’s how much I sweat today!, followed by pictures and a recipe for soup, for instance, so this will be a great page to log what I’m going, even if I don’t mention it in a post!
At any rate, after my run, I got dinner started by firing up our brand new grill!
All chromed out, she is, with four burners, and a nice little side burner for simmering and sauteing. Our previous grill had been recalled, so we actually got this one from Lowe’s for free. Booyahmammy!
We picked it up last night, and this afternoon I made the first grilling dinner of the season – Grilled Maple Salmon. Ob. Sessed.
Super-fresh salmon filets are marinated in a sweet & sour concoction of rice vinegar, maple syrup, and orange juice, then grilled until tender and flaky. Served over grilled asparagus and skinny “rice”. (Wait ’til you get a load of this “rice”!)
But first, zee salmon! Start by stirring together a marinade including rice vinegar, maple syrup, and fresh orange juice. That’s it!
Pour the marinade into a plastic bag, then place 4 filets inside and marinate in the refrigerator for 1-3 hours.
As I mentioned, I grilled fresh asparagus to place underneath the salmon, so at the same time I started the salmon marinade, I also prepped the asparagus.
My Mom did this the other day, and I thought it was so smart: trim a bunch of fresh asparagus, place the stalks in a plastic bag or container, then season with olive oil, salt & pepper. Do this at the same time as the salmon, and the asparagus will be all ready to go when the salmon is. Perfect!
When the salmon is done marinating, get your grill screamin’ hot. Pre-heat two burners on high then, when you’re ready to grill, turn the heat down to medium-high.
Drain the salmon marinade into a small saucepan, and boil until it reduces by half. (I know, I’m already shaming myself for this saucepan’s condition.)
When the marinade is ready, place the salmon on the grill over one burner, and the asparagus over another.
Grill the salmon for 3-4 minutes on the first side, brushing with the reduced marinade every so often.
When the “tail” end of the filet is almost opaque, flip ‘er on over.
Some people leave the salmon skin on, but it kind of makes me naush, so I just peel it off with tongs. It comes right off.
While the salmon finishes cooking on the other side for 3-4 more minutes, roll the asparagus up and down to cook evenly. You really can’t mess these babies up, they’re pretty fool proof.
Serve the sweet, sour & smoky grilled salmon over the asparagus, and a pile of fluffy, sauteed “rice”!
Ahhh, juicy and succulent grilled salmon. There’s nothing like it!
Maple Grilled Salmon
1/4 cup rice vinegar
3 Tablespoons maple syrup
2 Tablespoons fresh orange juice
4-6oz salmon filets
salt & pepper
- Combine rice vinegar, maple syrup, and orange juice into a ziplock bag. Add salmon filets and marinate for 1-3 hours.
- Heat grill to high, then pour the marinade into a small saucepan, and reduce by half. Lay the salmon filets on a plate and spray both sides with nonstick spray.
- Place salmon filets on the grill, and grill for 3-4 minutes, or you can see that salmon has cooked halfway through. Brush with reduced marinade every so often. Flip, peel back the grilled skin, and discard. Brush second side with marinade, then grill for 3-4 minutes, or until cooked through. Remove to a plate then season with salt & pepper.
The orange juice and maple syrup combine with the rice vinegar to make a tangy, mouthwatering flavor that is totally over the top. It really enhances the flavor of the fresh salmon.
I think I might be most tickled over the Cauliflower Rice piled underneath though.
Last week reader Beth told me she made rice out of cauliflower to serve as a low-carb side dish. I was intrigued enough to give it a whirl, and I’m SO glad I did. This stuff is the ‘ish!
All you need is 1 head cauliflower and a food processor fitted with the grating disc, or a box grater.
Here’s a peek at that grating disc.
Cut the core out of the cauliflower, then into small enough pieces to fit into the food processor shoot.
Next, let ‘er rip!
The result is cauliflower that honest to goodness resembles rice!
You can then steam the cauliflower, or do what I did and saute it. YUM. All I did was heat extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet, then saute green onion and minced garlic, until the garlic was golden brown. Next I added a HEAP of the cauliflower (unsteamed) along with salt & pepper.
5-10 minutes later, you’ve got delicious sauteed cauliflower rice! Actually, if I closed my eyes, I might think these were hash browns. SO GOOD!
This was the perfect meal to kick-off grilling season.
Healthy, fresh, and fit!
Alright my friends! All that relaxing this weekend means that, uh, none of my to-do list got done. Where’s a self completing check list when you need one?!
Have a great night!
The first thing I’m going to grill/have grilled this year is __________.”