Gridiron butterflied salmon - Opening of the BBQ season


Butterflied salmon fillets on BBQ

First BBQ of the summer yesterday! It was a lovely day, hottest of the year so far. And I hope it’s just so far and there will be more and hotter to come. The car outside thermometer was showing 25.5C. Inside the car it was even hotter. The air conditioning must have checked out sometime over the winter feeling neglected and obsolete. Not a puff of cool air to be had.

I have left the BBQ season opening late this year, so it was high time. While waiting for the barbecue to be ready and hubby to come home, both can take a while, I decided to paint the garden fence. It is barely worth painting and I had to go with soft brush strokes lest the whole thing should collapse. But I want to wangle another year or two of life out of it as there is so much else that needs doing. We live in a Victorian house which by British standards is not very old I suppose, but everything is falling apart a bit all the time including the garden. 

Fence looking sharp
I absolutely love it having lived all my life in modern Finnish houses with underfloor heating, quadruple glazing and straight walls. Husband wasn’t so keen, but he chooses his battles. After viewing 35 houses with me without finding one we both liked, he left it all to me and at lucky 72 I found this gem. So here we are, it’s our fourth year in the Victorian  labour camp. I haven't had any issues with too much spare cash in all that time either and all my nice handbags are from the time before the house. Lucky I bought loads in my carefree non-homeowner days, so they might last me until the mortgage is paid. In 2035.

My parents are coming to visit in May, so we must prepare. I am hoping for lovely weather so we can barbecue and eat in the garden. I need to spruce up the garden a bit. I called to rescue a gardening guy from Bulgaria, who came to view and quote for the work. He didn’t come from Bulgaria obviously, but Ealing rather, but is originally from Bulgaria. I think without Eastern Europe the British houses would just go to wrack and ruin without anyone to paint or fix them. So thank you communism for screwing up the entire Eastern Europe for generations so that our crumbling capitalist houses might be kept afloat.

So Bogomil to rescue! He will come sometime in the near future to replace the decking which caved in last August under husbands best man halfway through our wedding celebrations, he hadn’t even touched the lamb chops at that point. My Bulgarian hero will also replace the collapsed trellis and wonky side gate, which won’t close without physical violence.

I  decided to open the BBQ season with my gridiron salmon. I absolutely love salmon made this way. You get the lovely taste of the charcoal and it’s fresh and summery and moist. I keep the other flavours simple, just salt, pepper, fresh chopped dill and lemon juice.

Recipe: Gridiron Grilled butterflied salmon with lemon and dill

4 skin-on salmon fillets or half side of salmon
1/3 cup or more of chopped fresh dill
Juice of half a lemon
Olive oil

Raw salmon fillet cut into butterflies

Butterfly the fillets (cut each fillet lengthwise in the middle leaving the skin in-tact and then fold the fillet so that the skin now is in the middle of what is now the butterfly fillet), that way the fish cooks evenly, they look nice and get loads of lovely smokey surface area. Season with salt and lemon pepper, sprinkle on half of the dill and the lemon juice and drizzle with olive oil. Flip the butterflied fillets over and do the same on the other side. Let sit for a while to marinate.

Oil the gridiron carefully, so the fish won’t stick to it. Place the fish in and close the device. Grill just for a couple of minutes on both sides until the fish has got some nice colour but is still lovely and moist. It really cooks very quickly. Also watch out for the flames. The oil and fat dripping from the fish can easily get some flames going, just lift the gridiron away from the flames if that happens.

This is possibly the easiest and quickest BBQ food there is  and it’s definitely there at the top with the tastiest of them.

Salmon with herbs and lemon

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