What’s better than enjoying summertime with your family and friends? You’ve got the ideal weather, the best company, and a grand feast of the tastiest grilled delicacies. Every American waits eagerly for summer because of how fun it is.
With a gas grill at their disposal, people can cook up a lot of mouthwatering recipes. If everything goes according to plan and the food is cooked with care, you will have all your neighbors at your door begging to join the barbecue.
However, the key to having great food at a cookout is using the grill properly for cooking, leaving nothing undercooked or raw. Grilling food is a very specific skill that goes beyond any recipe; the work that goes before you grill the food adds to the taste of the food.
Of the many foods commonly found at backyard cookouts, grilled salmons are considered the healthiest. A perfect delicacy for all fish lovers, salmon is rich in omega 3. This constitutes essential fatty acids, making it a healthy choice for people who have high cholesterol or other heart problems.
Depending on the preference of the individual, salmon can be smoked, grilled, baked, poached, or fried. Regardless of the method you choose, the result will be a delicious meal that satisfies the taste buds of your guests.
However, among the many ways of cooking salmon, people prefer grilling it; the process takes less time comparatively and retains much of its flavor. The following step-by-step guide will help you learn the way you can cook a salmon on a gas grill.
Cooking Salmon on a Gas Grill
To grill a tasty salmon, you need to purchase firm, fresh fillets. In addition to being firm and crisp, ensure that the salmon is light pink in color and has smooth cuts to it.
Avoid buying fillets that have a fishy smell and steaks that indicate old cuts. To ensure that the fillets don’t stick to the grill when barbecuing, don’t forget to ask the fishmonger for skin-on fillets. Once you have made the purchase, sprinkle kosher salt on the salmon as an added protective layer; doing this will ensure that the fillet does not stick or break apart while cooking.
1. Pre-Grilling Preparation
To cook the salmon properly, you will first have to prepare the grill. Since barbecues are a predominantly summer event, chances are that you have not used the grill for a long time. If this is the case, consider cleaning the grill with a metal brush. Applying oil on the grill’s center will reduce sticking during cooking.
Once you are done with the cleaning and set up, preheat the gas grill at a high setting.
If you have aluminum foil with you, then oiling the grill is not necessary. Spreading the foil across the grill and spraying some oil on the foil will protect the salmon from sticking to the grill.
2. Getting the Salmon Ready
While the gas grill is being prepared, brush the salmon fillets with your favorite dry rub or marinade. While marinating the pieces, you need to be wary of the time. Marinating the salmon long enough causes the fillet to lose its firmness and flavor.
Before you start grilling, estimate the cooking time for each fillet, a fillet that is a half-inch thick requires about 4 minutes of cooking i.e. 2 minutes of cooking per side.
3. Let the Grilling Begin
As soon as you feel that the gas grill is ready, adjust the heating to a low-heat setting. To get the best grilled salmon, start placing the marinated fillets with the skin side up. Close the lid of the gas grill for cooking. The cooking time for each side of the fillet is mentioned above. Once you feel that one side of the fillet is cooked perfectly, remove the lid and flip the fillets with a thin spatula. Repeat the same procedure for the skin side.
If you want to add another layer of taste, rub both sides with olive oil or butter. Also, don’t forget to place the salmon pieces at an equal distance so that they cook evenly. If set at the right heating temperature, a one-inch thick piece takes 10 minutes to cook thoroughly.
The appearance of white beads on the salmon’s surface and sides indicate that the fish is now overcooking. Remove the fish immediately upon noticing these signs.
Once you reach the cooking time, remove the cooked salmon from the gas grill. Like all grilled proteins, let it rest. An essential characteristic of grilled salmon is that it keeps brewing for a few minutes even after it has been removed from the grill. Allow it to cool down.
An indicator of the best grilled salmon is when the salmon starts flaking easily. Well-cooked fillets have a solid color and a tender, flaky feel to their textured meat. If you want, you can separate the skin from the meat with the help of a spatula.
The presence of these signs mentioned above means that your grilled salmon is ready for serving. A little bit of presentation will give your dish a sophisticated look. Serving the grilled salmon with lemon or green vegetables sprinkled at the side will add to the experience.
Important Points to Remember
Remember, preparing the best grilled salmon is easier said than done. Slight carelessness can result in a salmon that is undercooked and not as good as the dish can be. Before you go about cooking a salmon, keep a few essential tips in mind.
- Avoid overcooking the salmon (white beads on the surface and the sides of the fish are indicators of overcooking)
- Frequent turning will tear the flesh
- Don’t forget to purchase salmon with its skin on
- Marinade the salmon well before use.
Considering the factors mentioned above will help you in ensuring that the salmon is well-cooked and ready for consumption.
Grilled Salmon Recipes
Since gas grills are convenient and easy to use, here are some of the recipes that you can easily start trying on your gas grill. Just look them up on Google.
1. Grilled Miso Salmon
This simple and delicious Japanese dish adds to the salmon ingredients such as red miso and grated ginger. The grilled miso marinade is a quick and easy meal that you can prepare in a short span while adding tasty flavors to the fillets.
2. Firecracker Salmon
With soy sauce, sambal chili paste, ginger, and sesame oil being the core ingredients, the firecracker salmon has an Asian-inspired taste. Leaning more towards the spicy side, this salmon dish can be prepared quickly.
3. Cedar Plank Salmon
If you want to add a light, smoky flavor to the salmon, then cedar plank salmon is the suitable recipe for you. Placing the salmon on a piece of wood while grilling, allows the smoke to form over the salmon with the grill’s heat. However, unlike other salmon recipes, preparing cedar plank salmon takes a lot more time. First, the plank is soaked. Then, the fish takes an additional 30 minutes to grill thoroughly. This makes cedar plank salmon a long but tasty dish to prepare.
4. Salmon in Barbecue Sauce
Although the combination of barbecue sauce and salmon may sound unfavorable, the results are opposite. In addition to improving the overall look of the dish, the barbecue sauce enhances the taste of the grilled salmon. You can either pour the sauce over the grilled salmon while cooking it or serve it as a dipping sauce at the table. Either way, the sauce will add to the taste of the salmon and make it even more delicious.
5. Stuffed Salmon
The fillets can be a challenge to grill. However, salmon pinned with toothpicks is much easier to handle. This recipe allows you to load the grilled salmon with herbs or vegetables; the choice of stuffing depends on the flavor you want for your meal.
Oil the grill properly, choose the stuffing, and mix it with the salmons; these are the only things that you need to ensure before cooking the grilled salmon.
Our Final Thoughts
The summer season is incomplete without a barbecue. With numerous barbecues held within a short span of each other, you need variety for your gathering.
A grilled salmon cooked to perfection will not only add to the variety but will also add an element of surprise to your gathering. Grilling depends mostly on the nature of the meat and the skills of the griller. With the tips mentioned above, you’ve got one-half covered. Just ensure that you have the right ingredients and voila! You’ve got yourself a perfectly grilled salmon.