Saturday, July 24, 2010

Food: Grilled Salmon with Blueberry Pan Sauce

One of my favorite, mid-summer finds at the market is fresh blueberries. So when July rolls around each year, I look forward to loading up my cart (and freezer at home) with several quarts of the purple skinned fruit. I mean what could be better than something that not only tastes awesome but has a major variety of uses and contains 25% of your daily Vitamin C and tons of antioxidants in one serving?!?

Blueberries bring back so many memories from when I was younger. My childhood neighbors had a huge blueberry patch in their backyard and those bushes provided the basis for countless blueberry muffins and pie and jam and pancakes and of course, lots of opportunities to just eat them plain on a fresh bowl of morning cereal.

When I moved to Michigan almost 10 years ago, some friends and I decided it was about time we found our own "you pick" blueberry patch and drove over the border to Canada to pick blueberries at Klassen's in Essex. It was a fun adventure but unfortunately a rather long haul from Detroit. So luckily, a couple of years ago, I discovered a Michigan patch that was closer and try to make an effort to take a summer afternoon each year to go picking. (BTW...A good website for finding "pick your own" places near you is:

Although my normal use for berries, when not just eating them plain, consists of traditional items like muffins and pancakes, when I received my Bon Appetit the other day, I knew I just had to make this recipe. I will admit I'm normally not the biggest fan of fruit sauces and fish (since most of them are too sweet). But this sauce was fresh and savory and nicely complimented the salmon and mashed sweet potatoes. The mint also provided a bright flavor which made the meal so well suited for the summer. And let me just say, there's really nothing like a quick, healthy meal to make you enjoy the hot summer weather while feeling fulfilled and refreshed.

Grilled Salmon with Quick Blueberry Pan Sauce
From: Bon Appetit - August 2010 Issue
Recipe by Lori Longbotham


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil plus additional for brushing
  • 3/4 cup sliced shallots
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt plus additional for seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme plus additional for seasoning
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice plus additional for seasoning
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 4 7-ounce salmon fillets (each about 3/4 inch thick)
  • 3 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh mint, divided


  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add shallots; sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt, 1/4 teaspoon thyme, and 1/8 teaspoon allspice. Stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add blueberries, 1/4 cup water, and vinegar. Stir to blend. Mash berries with potato masher or back of fork and cook until sauce thickens, stirring often, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with freshly ground black pepper. Remove from heat. DO AHEAD Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature. Rewarm before using.

  • Brush grill rack with oil. Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Brush salmon on both sides with oil; sprinkle with coarse salt, thyme, allspice, and black pepper.

  • Grill salmon until just opaque in center, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer to plates. Stir 2 tablespoons sliced mint into warm blueberry sauce. Spoon sauce over salmon and sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon mint. Serve immediately.

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