Gina: It’s happening to all of us: we’re getting older. That’s the bad news. The good news is that there are foods we can eat that have indisputable heath benefits, and salmon is one of them. That wouldn’t excite me nearly as much if the fish wasn’t so sweet and delicious. Pat and I were on board with salmon from the get-go, but trying to introduce it to our girls was a challenge. I thought if I added just a hint of sweetness I could ease it on them. So I created this sweet and spicy sauce using mustard and brown sugar. Score one for Mom! The sauce caramelizes under the broiler, and the resulting glaze is a perfect complement to the rich-tasting salmon.
If you didn’t already know it, I am the baby sister in my family, in every sense of the word. My older sisters think it’s ironic when I cook for them, because they all spoiled me so much when I was growing up (now Pat continues that tradition, and it all works for me). My big sister Tanya--she’s the more athletic one, who’s always telling me to hold my stomach in and keep my back straight--actually viewed me differently once I made this dish.
We like to splurge on wild salmon, because it’s the absolute best for you, and the flavor is as sweet as candy.
Yield: Serves 6
1 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
2 teaspoons drained capers
Pinch cayenne pepper
One 2-pound center-cut wild salmon fillet, skin removed
Freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup spicy brown mustard
¼ cup firmly packed light-brown sugar
Preheat the oven to 300°F. Heat the wine, butter, Old Bay Seasoning, capers, and cayenne in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes.
Sprinkle the salmon on both sides with salt and pepper. Place the fish in a glass baking dish. Pour the wine mixture over the top, and bake until fish is opaque in the center, 15 to 17 minutes; remove from the oven.
Preheat the broiler. Whisk together the mustard and sugar in a small bowl; spread over the salmon to cover. Broil the salmon until the topping is brown and bubbling, about 3 minutes. Transfer the salmon to a platter and serve.