A Recipe for Perfect Alaska King Salmon

First, you have to understand that in the early spring you cannot buy fresh king salmon in Haines. The only way to get it is with a rod and reel and putting about for hours in a  slow boat. Second, it must be a morning in May, a solid year since you've eaten fresh king salmon. Next you have to see a few boats trolling in the bay on a sunny, calm morning as you ride your bike through town and out along the Chilkat River, and think, "boy I sure would like some king salmon." By the time you've pedaled thirty miles or so, and are almost back home,  you can smell the king grilling you want some so badly. Just then you pass a fisherman friend on the road and wave. He's in the car on the way to coffee at the bakery with friends. He catches a lot of king salmon. Sport fishing for king salmon is among his favorite things to do. You think, "I wonder if I should call him, and tell him if he catches me some king salmon I'll volunteer to cook it at my house and have him (and his lovely wife) over to share it." Then you decide that is really like inviting yourself over for dinner, and instead you'll just have to wait until there is some king salmon for sale. Then, that very afternoon, you are out transplanting the spring starts in the garden when your fishing friend pulls in the driveway and hands you a cookie tray with a slab of king salmon on it. "I thought you might like this, it's the first one of the season, " he says. His wife is smiling. Now this story would be perfect if when you said "come for dinner," they said yes, but they were already cooking another sizable chunk of the fish for friends that very night. "We can't eat it all," the smiling fisherman said. Luckily, your family can, and it is so darn good that it tastes like a sunny May day.

 

Hours-old king salmon with sweet onion, lime, and a sprinkling of cajun fish seasoning, grilled in foil until it is barely done. 

 

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