Friday, October 12, 2012

Crispy Salmon with Green Tomato Dill Relish

In thinking up another good use for the millions of green tomatoes I have as a result of our chilly fall weather, my mind went straight to dill relish because I've been going bonkers for pickles lately.  I've never heard of green tomato relish but with a quick google search I see it exists in droves.  Most are not sour, but sweet, from the looks of it.  I followed something close to a cucumber dill relish recipe.  I wouldn't even guess it's green tomatoes in there!  It's delicious!

I have 2 favorite uses for relish and neither involves hot dogs.  I love it in a homemade thousand island dressing but my very favorite use is in a simple sour cream based sauce when served over pan grilled salmon.  We can only afford to eat this dish (salmon in Duluth $$$) about once a year and it's such a treat, we go nuts!

I'm also a fan of the fact that this recipe calls for turmeric, which aids in my efforts to use up the bottle by its one year expiration date!

Green Tomato Dill Relish
Makes about 3 pints.

8 cups large green tomatoes, roughly chopped
5 cups large cucumbers, half of skin peeled away, seeds mostly removed, roughly chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, smashed and diced
1 quart water
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 cup salt
1/2 teaspoon pickling spice mix (mustard seed, bay leaf, coriander)
1 tablespoon dill seed
2 to 3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 cups vinegar

Finely chop tomato, cucumber, onion and garlic in a food processor.  Add water from the one quart if needed to keep things moving.  Mix remaining water, chopped veggies, turmeric and salt in a bowl.  Let it stand at room temperature for 2 hours, stirring a couple times.  Drain in a wire mesh basket, then rinse with cold water and drain again.  Combine with spice mix, dill seed, brown sugar, red pepper flakes and vinegar in a pot on the stove.  Bring to boil and simmer for 10 minutes.  Pour into clean jars and keep in fridge.  Or can in sterilized jars and seal in a water bath.

Crispy Salmon
For 4.

You will need:
2 pounds fresh salmon, with skin, scaled and sliced into 4 equal size pieces
1 stick of butter, room temp
Salt and black pepper
Cast iron skillet

Slather the skin side of the salmon with softened butter.  Preheat your skillet a couple notches over medium. When the pan is very hot, place 2 pieces of salmon at a time into the skillet, butter side down.  Sprinkle the top of the salmon with a generous pinch of salt and pepper.  Cook on the first side until the white cooked salmon on the sides crawls up above the halfway point on the thickest section of meat.  Heads up, things tend to get smokey!  Turn and cook on the second side just until the white parts of cooked flesh barely meet on the sides.   Remove from the pan and keep in a warm oven while you cook your other 2 pieces.  Serve, with the crispy skin, covered in sauce and garnished with relish and fresh dill.

Sour Creamy Salmon Sauce
Makes almost one cup.

2/3 cup sour cream
1 small tablespoon olive oil or mayonnaise
3 tablespoons dill relish
1/4 teaspoon sugar
Salt and black pepper to taste

Mix all together in a bowl with a fork or small whisk until combined.  Adjust salt, pepper and sugar to taste and refrigerate until ready to eat.  Serve in generous amounts over grilled salmon with fresh dill as a garnish.  Best used the same day.


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