GRILLING BLOG MAY 2019
It’s amazing how quickly the weather changes! I think I’ve gotten more sun in the past two weeks then all the previous weeks this year combined! It’s perfect weather for sipping iced tea and grilling out on the deck. Now recently, my husband and I have cut back on meat in our diets, opting instead to eat more fish and vegetables. However, we soon discovered-- like most people-- that diet changes can be tricky when all your go-to recipes include ingredients you’re trying to avoid. A marbled ribeye was always the star of our cookouts in previous years, but we wanted to see if we could capture that same magic without the red meat. So, for our first grilling party of the year, we decided to conduct a mini-experiment to find out which of our favorite seasonings taste best on a variety of fish and vegetables. We also drafted some friends to taste test.
Here is the methodology: we took salmon, trout, potatoes, asparagus, Brussel sprouts, summer squash and pineapple, and prepared them half with one blend and half with another so we could compare the seasonings. We tested the Marketspice Salmon Rub, the Trout Spice, the Alderwood Smoked Salt and the Ghost Chile Infused Sea Salt. For the fish, we seasoned half the salmon with Salmon Rub and half the trout with Trout Spice, and the remaining fish we seasoned with the Alderwood Smoked Salt. The potatoes, asparagus, and summer squash were seasoned half with Salmon Rub and half with Trout Spice. The Brussel sprouts and pineapple were both seasoned half with the Alderwood Smoked Salt and half with the Ghost Chile Infused Salt. We did our best to cook every tasting-pair identically; this includes sprinkling them with the spice blends and then wrapping them in foil and grilling them for equal amounts of time. No fancy marinades required. Then we gave our guests the two dishes for a side-by-side comparison.
So here are the tops picks for grilling veggies and fish this summer!
It came as no surprise that the most popular blend of the evening was our Salmon Rub. This ten-year-old rub continues to be a top seller and it’s easy to see why. Dill, smoked paprika and brown sugar make a delicious glaze that complements a good cut of salmon without overpowering it. Our guests also said it was the best compliment for asparagus and summer squash. Despite everyone favoring the Salmon Rub, there were no leftovers of the Alderwood Smoked Salt seasoned salmon. Everyone agreed that the smoked salt was exquisite on both salmon and Brussel sprouts.
Just as the Salmon Rub was a favorite on the salmon, so too was the Trout Spice a favorite on the trout. Lemon accented pepper and lemon peel add a zippy flavor to the parsley and dill. What we didn’t expect from this blend was for it to be an excellent addition to potatoes.
The exotic flavor of the evening was grilled pineapple. If you’ve never had grilled pineapple before, then you are missing out! Most recipes call for some sort of brown sugar or honey glaze, which always struck me as unnecessary. Pineapple is already sweet on its own, so rather than adding more sweetness on top, we looked for a different flavor profile. A light sprinkling of salt is a nice compliment to sweet flavors, but why stop there? We put our Alderwood Smoked Salt head to head with our Ghost Chile Infused Sea Salt. Fresh pineapple was sliced up, skewered, salted and set on the grill. Both salts were outstanding! Our guests were split based on who preferred spicy flavors and who didn't. Be warned: Ghost Chile is not for the faint hearted so a light hand is recommended.
It looks like next week is going to be sunny and warm in the Pacific Northwest and I hope it is for you too. Let’s kick off the grilling season with new flavors and new recipes. You could even conduct your own grilling experiment.
See our full line of Shaker Jars below to add a little extra flavor to all your dishes this summer!
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