Smoked Salmon and other Summer Seafood from The Reel Club

July 28, 2008 1:19:53 PM PDT
If you're tired of the same old summer meals, you should consider bringing some fresh seafood to the table. Many home cooks are afraid of preparing salmon and other dishes at home. But Chef Mychael Bonner of the Reel Club in Oak Brook says it's easy to do. His recipe for Smoked Organic Salmon features local and organic products; you can find many of them at your favorite farmers' market. The chef says it is ideal for those home chefs interested in a simple, yet sophisticated entree using exciting techniques and flavors.

You can try it at home, or at the Reel Club at the Oakbrook Center; for information, call 630. 368-9400

Smoked Organic Salmon with Fresh Arugula and Tomato Vinaigrette Served with Roasted Farmer's Market Corn & Zucchini

Begin with:

4 - 6oz. Organic Salmon Filets

Prepare the following Dry Rub

  • 1 T Brown Sugar
  • 1 T Dry Oregano
  • ½ T Chili Powder
  • 1 T Coriander (lightly toasted)
  • 1 T Fennel (lightly toasted)
  • 2 T Chopped Garlic
  • ½ T Salt
  • ½ T Black Pepper

Place above ingredients into a spice grinder (coffee bean grinder) and pulverize until ingredients are in powder form. Liberally season each side of the salmon filets with the dry rub and place on a shallow tray to marinate at least 1 hour up to 6 hours.

The Smoking Process:

  1. Place marinated salmon filets in a ring along the interior of a large bowl leaving space in the center for a smaller bowl that will contain the wood chips.
  2. Soak hard wood chips in a bath of water. Once thoroughly soaked place in a small, oven safe bowl. NOTE: The size of the bowl must be conducive to fitting in the larger bowl that contains the salmon filets which will serve as a self-made smoker.
  3. Place the bowl of wood chips into a broiler or salamander until they begin to smoke. Remove the "smoking" chips from the broiler and place the small bowl in the center of the salmon filets and cover the large bowl containing the wood bowl tightly with plastic wrap.
  4. Allow to smoke for 30 minutes. NOTE: To maintain the intensity of smoke remove small bowl of wood chips and return to broiler until smoking begins again and repeat process for a total smoking time of 30 minutes.
  5. Upon completion of the smoking process place salmon filets in a shallow baking pan in a 350' oven for approximately 8 minutes.

Tomato Vinaigrette Preparation:

  • 3 Roma Tomatoes; peeled and seeded
  • ¼ c. diced white onion
  • ½ T. chopped garlic
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. Sherry Vinaigrette
  • ½ c. Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Sautee tomato, onion and garlic in 1 T olive oil until soft
  2. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes
  3. Remove liquid from pan and allow to cool
  4. Place into blender/food processor
  5. Puree until smooth
  6. Whisk in Sherry Vinaigrette and Olive Oil
  7. Add salt & pepper to taste
  8. Clean and set aside 1 c. of Arugula

Pan Roasted Farmer's Market Corn and Zucchini:

  • 1 c. freshly shucked corn
  • ½ c. sliced zucchini
  • ½ T sliced garlic
  • 1 t. chopped Rosemary
  • 2 T. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil over med-high heat; add zucchini & corn and sauté until golden brown. Add chopped garlic & rosemary and cook for a few minutes more until garlic is cooked through. Add salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.

Plating (Individual portions):

  1. Mound corn & zucchini in center of a large plate
  2. Place smoked salmon filet on top of roasted vegetables
  3. Toss 1 T of the Tomato Vinaigrette with cleaned Arugula & place ¼ cup of the
  4. mixture on each plate directly atop of salmon filet
  5. Finish the presentation by drizzling 1 T. of the Tomato Vinaigrette in a circular pattern on the plate.

Colossal Crab Cocktail

Step 1:

  • Place ½ cup crushed ice on the bottom of cocktail glass
  • Put 1 snap light (glow stick) on top of crushed ice
  • Put crushed ice mould on top of light

Step 2: In the center of the ice mould, place

  • 2 oz. sliced celery
  • ½ cup julienne romaine
  • 2 stalks of romaine hearts in back of mould
  • Mound 2 sm. Celery stalks against the romaine hearts
  • Pile 4 oz. crab meat in the center of julienne romaine

STEP 3: Place on the outside of base plate

  • 2 oz. mustard sauce
  • 2 oz. cocktail sauce
  • 1 cocktail fork
  • 1 lemon wedge

Cheese Puffs

Make two dozen.

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 ½ cups tapioca starch
  • 1 ½ cups sour tapioca starch
  • ¾ cup corn oil
  • 1 ½ cups grated parmesan cheese or cheddar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt, or to taste
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease two, 12-cup mini-muffin pans.
  2. Combine the eggs, starches, oil and milk in blender and mix well. Lightly mix in the cheese. Add salt as needed.
  3. Divide into the pans and bake for 25 - 30 minutes, until lightly browned, rearranging the pans halfway through.
  4. Let sit 5 minutes before serving.

Chef's note:
This is based on a Brazilian recipe.

Tapioca starch is also called almidon dulce, polvilho doce, harina de yuca, cassava flour or manioc flour.

Steamed Alaskan King Crab

STEP 1:

  • Place 1 portion crab onto a perforated steamer pan
  • Place in steamer and cook for approx. 5-7 minutes.

STEP 2: Mound in the center of a serving bowl:

  • 3 medium sized boiled potatoes
  • 3 corn on the cob pieces

STEP 3: Arrange the steamed crab legs over the corn and potatoes STEP 4: Garnish with 1 parsley sprig, Lemon wedge

STEP 5: Serve with 2 oz. melted butter


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