Tequila Salmon

For this you will need:

  • A slab of salmon, preferably wild caught.
  • Some tequila, and not too expensive.
  • A lime.
  • Garlic, lemon pepper, pepper, chili powder, and your choice of other Latin spices.
  • Vegetables to your taste.
  • Baked potatoes would be nice.

Here’s something that I cooked one night for just Grandma ‘n’ me. I’d love to cook salmon for the kids, but they’ve never really warmed up to fish, which is a shame. Except for the eldest grandson. He’ll eat his weight in salmon.

I love salmon, as much as I love chili or other favorite dishes. But salmon’s expensive, no doubt, especially if you buy it right. The farm-raised salmon is more affordable, but since they raise those fishies on corn-based salmon chow, instead of the krill that the wild salmon eat, it’s a lot less nutritious. That’s a shame, isn’t it? You’d like to think you’re contributing to more sustainable fish populations with farm salmon, but you’re not doing your body nearly as much good.

So I had a decent little slab of salmon, wondering what to do with it. I thought, how about a little Mexican style? But let’s make it a little unique. What’s good in Mexico? And I thought of tequila and lime.

So I went to the embarrassingly nicely stocked liquor cupboard and got out the cheap stuff. Now, kids, especially you adult kids, I thoroughly enjoy sipping a nice anejo, but I ain’t gonna use that for cooking. As my friend John says, margaritas are simply a delivery vehicle for cheap tequila. You could likewise say that soda is a delivery vehicle for cheap(ish) scotch. The good stuff, you enjoy on its own. The cheap stuff, you use to mix with other things. So I used the cheap tequila.

I poured some olive oil into the skillet, and while it was heating, I seasoned the flesh side of the salmon with chili powder, garlic, pepper, and from a bottle of Latin spices. I then poured in a few dollops of tequila into the skillet, squeezed in some fresh lime, and tossed in the salmon, flesh side down. Well, don’t you go tossing it in. It’ll splash hot olive oil and tequila and lime on you, which is an unpleasant experience, especially if you’re cooking in shorts or an open robe, not that your Grandpa would know from experience. Just put the salmon in nicely. Flesh side down.

Then I chunked up some of my favorite vegetables and threw… I mean, placed them in the skillet, too, and seasoned them with garlic and lemon pepper. You know what would go good with this? Start baking a potato. We do ours in the microwave, so you’re not going to see a “Baked Potato” story from me. I don’t think so, anyway. If I did, it’d be pretty short.

When the salmon got nicely browned, I turned it over. I kept the vegetables stirred up, of course. Then I cooked it the rest of the way through. Now, I like my salmon more rare, and Grandma gets a bit disgusted with that, like probably most of the population, so I tend to carve off the skinnier end and well-done margins of the salmon for her and keep the less-cooked parts for me.

We like to have our salmon with a nice pinot grigio or chardonnay.

Enjoy your fish, kids! Eat up – it’s good for you.


— Grandpa

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