In our cooking classes here at the Weber Grill Restaurant, we have showcased this recipe a number of years, with great success. One of our key tips is that you want to purchase salmon from the freshest of a source as possible.
Look for busy fish markets, or stores that specialize in seafood, so the inventory is constantly being replaced with fresh catch. When cooking this simple recipe, the raw ingredients need to shine.
Roasted Whole Salmon on Cedar
By Matt Jost
1 large cedar plank (12” X 6”), soaked for 60 minutes
3-4 large cherry wood chunks
1 side whole salmon, skin on, pin bones removed (about 4 lbs)
1 bunch fresh dill
1 lemon, sliced thinly
Seasonings of your choice (Old Bay, cumin, dried citrus peel, kosher salt, black pepper, etc)
1. Lay the salmon filet out on a flat surface and run your finger along the filet, from head to tail, to check for pin bones. If you feel any hard points, remove them with a clean pair of fish tweezers.
2. Prepare the grill for direct, low heat grilling (about 350F). Place a few chunks of cherry wood (if extra smoke is desired) on top of the coals and close the lid.
3. Wait for the smoke to start pouring out of the grill and the grill reaches about 350F.
4. Char one side of your presoaked plank for about 5-7 min directly on the grate over the coals. You will hear some cracking and popping at the 5-7 minute mark which is give the plank some char, this does a great job in adding smoke flavor to the salmon. Flip the plank so that the char side is up and place the salmon on the plank. Season the salmon with desired seasonings, then top with dill springs and the sliced lemons.
5. Place the plank with the salmon in the center of the grill over direct heat. Close the lid and roast the salmon for about 30 minutes. Check the filet after 20 minutes with an instant read thermometer. When the filet reaches 135F in the thickest part of the filet, remove it from the grill. For best aroma and presentation, keep the salmon on the plank when serving.