Grilled Salmon with White Balsamic and Vanilla Marinade served with Grilled Fennel and Peach Salad Paired with Commanderie de Peyrassol Rose'

While trying to come up with this dish for The Urban Grape’s August newsletter I had to read about this beautifully colored wine. If a wine can be that pretty in the bottle then I just had to know what people thought. Rose’s are among my favorite summer wines and I wanted to do this one justice. I had a bottle in front of me, but still wanted to compare notes. I read what the professional’s thought and the everyday palate of course. I was amazed to find both tasted 95% the same things. Strawberry, peach, hint of licorice, mineral, etc. My mind was made up for a recipe and then I called TJ and told him what I was pairing with the wine. I heard him laugh on the other end and I said “does that sound good?” and he said “you had me at balsamic.”

Fresh Salmon - NOT farm raised!

Fresh Salmon - NOT farm raised!

The wine is made of Cinsault, Grenache and Syrah ( hence the kiss of licorice) The producers do everything organic for this wine and that is right up my alley. They only fertilize with sheep manure and use no synthetic fertilizers. It is hard enough to make wine let alone doing it this way as well. My hat is off to a fabulous Rose’. Please enjoy this pairing.

Serves 4
First things first, put that Commanderie in the fridge for a hour or so and get a nice chill on it, not freezing just chilled!
4 4-6 oz pieces of Wild American Salmon, skin on, King Salmon if you can get it! (other wise what ever is FRESH not farmed)

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 shallot, diced fine
  • 1.5 tsp fresh organic parsley, chopped
  • 1.5 tsp fresh organic basil, leaves torn
  • 1.5 tsp fresh fennel fronds, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 Vanilla bean, split and seeds removed

In a plastic bag or bowl mix all the ingredients and add the fish for at least a hour up to 2. Heat the grill to medium high and use either a grill pan or some aluminum foil on the grill. This will help the fish not to stick. Brush the pan lightly or foil with a little olive oil and get hot.

Remove fish from marinade reserving it to brush on along the way to help keep fish moist. This step is really important, pat the fish dry from marinade and brush lightly with olive oil, cook skin side down on the foil. fish should sizzle and you should leave it alone now. If it is windy and you feel the fish isn’t cooking the close the top, adjust the time down about 3 minutes total if you close the grill. Otherwise 5-7 minutes on one side, depending on thickness of your fish, flip and 5 more minutes. During this 5 minutes lightly brush the salmon with marinade mixture several times. leaving the fish alone the last minute of cooking. Salmon should be just barely cooked through, but still rare/ pink in the middle for the most tender and moist fish.

Grilled Fennel & Peach Salad

  • 1 medium fennel bulb, tops removed and cut in half and cored, slice 1/4 slice
  • 2 medium, firm peaches, halved and pitted
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tbsp of a good sherry vinegar
  • 2 tsp any local honey
  • 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • s and p to taste

This should be done before the fish if possible and served at room temp or just warm. Toss the sliced fennel in a bowl with a little olive oil s and p and place on the grill in a grill pan or on foil. Grill until just soft and has some nice golden color. remove to a plate and let cool. Brush peaches with olive oil and grill directly on grill over flames for a couple of minutes watching closely so they do not burn. Peaches will cook in about 2-3 minutes each side. turn once to get some nice grill marks. remove to a plate with fennel and let cool. In a bowl add the 2 tbsp olive oil, vinegar, dijon, honey and s and p. Whisk until combine and add the fennel to this bowl and toss well, set aside for a minute until needed.

To Plate this dish
Put the piece of nice salmon on a pretty plate. on the side of the fish put 1 piece of the grilled peach top with about 1/4 cup of the grilled fennel tossed with the dressing. garnish with some fennel fronds and open that chilled Commanderie de Peyrassol Rose’.

Posted on July 11, 2013 and filed under dinner menus, Fish.