Tuesday, 9 June 2015


Finally, I got my sister and her writing partner (a.k.a. Jamie Tremain) to my house for a celebratory dinner in honour of their mystery novel The Silk Shroud which is soon to be published.

The soon to be famous (infamous?) Jamie Tremain(Pam Blance and Liz Lindsay)

In spite of the fact that Liz was a bit under the weather we had a grand evening. My BFF Shirley joined us and the four of us enjoyed an "all girls" evening complete with champagne for toasting the up and coming authors.  Lots of giggles, some serious discussion about life and love (what girls' night is complete without that?) and if I say so myself a fabulously prepared Peach Teriyaki glazed Steelhead Trout smoked on a Cedar Plank and served with ever so slightly charred fresh Ontario Asparagus.  How simply Canadian is that?

Steelhead Trout on a Cedar Plank with Peach Teriyaki Glaze

I should have recorded the conversation because a week and a half later I really don't remember everything we chatted about.  I do remember talk of travel, books we've read and are yet to read, and THE upcoming novel.  There was a lot of laughter, talk of grandchildren and much fixing of all the ills of the world.  But actual details... I'm short on those.  I should have gotten one of the writers to ghostwrite this post. 

So I will just do what I do best and get down to the recipe. Which might in itself prove difficult because I didn't write down a single note as I prepared this meal. Not to mention all the talking, giggling and other distractions that were going on while I prepared it.  Did I mention there was wine involved?  If you've been reading my posts I don't have to mention that wine, when there is good food and great company, is always involved!


1. Soak a cedar plank intended for use on a barbecue in water for a minimum of one hour.

2. Wipe the trout (about 2 lbs. for 4 servings) with a damp paper towel and then pull out any large pin bones you might find.  Gently run your hand along the piece of fish until you feel the bone(s) poking through the flesh.  Use a clean pair of needle nose pliers to pull the bones out. Don't worry about getting them all because you won't.

3. Put the fish on a plate and keep in the refrigerator until about 30 minutes before you want to cook it.

4. Make the glaze: In a small saucepan mix 1/2 cup each of Soy Sauce and Sweet Rice Vinegar, 1T Minced Garlic, 1T Minced Ginger, 3T Brown Sugar, 1T Honey, 3T Peach Jam (I used homemade from last fall).  Heat over medium-low heat until sugar has dissolved and it is just bubbling and becoming a little syrupy. Remove from heat and let cool down.

5. You can now do one of two things.  When the glaze has cooled down a lot pour some over the fish and let it marinate for a little while - 30 minutes or so.   OR you can forget this step like I did and instead put the glaze on the fish AFTER you put it on the cedar plank on the barbecue. Either way is fine; both work; it all depends on how many people are talking at one time and where your wine glass is...

6.  Turn on the barbecue to medium high heat and let it get heated up.

7.  Remove the cedar plank from the water, shaking most of the excess off, and place it on the barbecue over one of the burners.  Turn all the burners down to medium-low or low, close the lid and let the cedar plank start to smoke a little.  If it catches fire spritz it with some water to douse the flames.  Once it is smoking, turn the heat off under the plank, but leave the other burner(s) on medium to low.

8.  Place the fish skin side down on the cedar plank (either already covered with some glaze or glaze free (see step #5). If not already covered with glaze, use a brush and brush some onto the fish.

9.  Close the lid of the barbecue and leave it alone while you go get the asparagus ready.

10. Clean asparagus, snap off and discard the woody bits at the end; and toss the asparagus in a dish with some sea salt, fresh cracked pepper, a little olive oil and a teaspoon of sesame seeds.  Roll them around in the dish with your hands to make sure they are thoroughly covered with oil and seasonings.

11. After 15 minutes or so check the fish and brush on some more glaze - don't be shy about it but don't glop it on either.

12.  Place the asparagus on a vegetable grill for the barbecue spreading them out in a single layer.  If you don't have a special grill use a heavy duty aluminium pan.  Place on the burner(s) beside the fish.  The burners should be on low. Brush the fish again with a little more glaze.  Close the cover and pour another glass of wine for your guests and yourself.

13.  Check on the asparagus from time to time to make sure it isn't burning - move them around on the grill or in the pan to cook more evenly.  A little charring is okay.

14.  After the fish has been cooking about 30 minutes everything should be ready.  Use your judgement;  unless the fish was very thick it should be cooked by now. Try flaking it gently with a fork and you will know. If you like the asparagus cooked more leave it on longer, if you like it more fresh-crisp take if off a few minutes sooner. Remember you are the cook - you are in charge.  Actually this is a very forgiving method of cooking fish; if it gets left on a few minutes more it stays moist and delicious.

15. It's too difficult to remove the fish from the plank safely, so I removed the cedar plank and the fish together to another wooden platter and placed the asparagus in a small rectangular dish for serving.  Just make sure the plank is not burning at all!  If you must have a starch, some plain steamed Basmati rice would be nice or just a warmed crusty loaf of bread would do.

16.  Carefully cut the fish into four pieces add some lemon wedges and voila dinner is served!  Pour some more wine....

I've been informed by dear husband that this meal MUST be recreated at some time for his enjoyment...

Do let me know if you try this recipe.  It works equally well with Salmon, Salmon Trout, or even Arctic Char.


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