Grilling salmon on a cedar plank started in the Pacific Northwest, and it’s become a popular way to prepare this prized seafood. Here, we’ve paired it with a honey-mustard sauce reminiscent of the Jewish delicatessens of New York. Any leftover salmon will be outstanding on your morning bagel.
Plank-Grilled Salmon with Mustard-Dill Sauce
Beer as needed for soaking (optional)
1/2 cup (4 oz./125 g.) unsalted butter
1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml.) fresh lemon juice
2 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce or tamari
2 lb. (1 kg.) skin-on center-cut salmon fillet (either 1 large fillet or 4 small fillets), about 1 inch (2.5 cm.) thick, pin bones removed
Olive oil for brushing
1/2 cup (4 oz./125 g.) honey mustard
1/4 cup (1/3 oz./10 g.) chopped fresh dill
Soak 1 large or 4 small untreated cedar planks in water or beer to cover for at least 1 hour. (If using the large plank, make sure it is big enough to hold the large fillet. If using small planks, make sure each is large enough to hold 1 small fillet.)
Prepare a charcoal or gas grill for direct grilling over high heat. Brush and oil the grill grate.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk in the lemon juice, parsley and soy sauce. Remove from the heat and keep warm.
Remove the plank from the water. Brush one side generously with olive oil and sprinkle with the salt. Place the plank on the grill directly over the fire, cover the grill, and heat until it begins to crackle and even smoke a bit, about 5 minutes.
Uncover the grill and place the salmon fillet on the plank. Brush the salmon generously with the butter mixture. Re-cover and cook, without turning the fillet, until the fish flakes when prodded gently with a fork, 10-12 minutes. The fillet should be cooked to medium, which is perfect for salmon. Check the plank frequently to make sure it doesn’t catch on fire. Have a spray bottle filled with water handy to extinguish any flames (but be careful — the steam created from the water can cause burns).
Using heavy-duty pot holders, transfer the plank to a heatproof work surface. Using a spatula, transfer the salmon fillet to a warmed platter. In a small bowl, stir together the mustard and dill. Serve the salmon at once, with the mustard sauce on the side. Serves 4.