Grilled Asparagus and Salmon with Dill Butter
Use the right tools for the job to grill a Father's day meal of Grilled Asparagus and Salmon with Dill Butter.
Why do Father's Day foods have to be all red meat? Dads may enjoy a nice piece of fish for a change. A healthier swap--especially with so much flavor--is a welcome addition to a summertime table. Plenty of vegetables never hurt anyone, so sharing the limelight with a fresh seasonal vegetable makes good sense and is good for you as well.
Typically when I am throwing the farm share on the grill I am not getting fancy. Maybe a pizza, some burgers or brats. Grilled veggies that I can later use in a repurposed way. Nothing what you'd consider a show stopper.
This meal is an exception to our normal fare. It's a combination of scratch foods and prepared mix items which resulted in a pretty painless effort on my part (the cook/grillmaster/dog wrangler/pot washer) but with elegant results. I finished off the dish by topping the salmon with a scoop of Dill Butter (got lots of dill? Here's how I use the abundance to make dill butter). For good measure I tossed the asparagus with dill butter as well.
I grabbed a packet of hollandaise sauce mix (I like Knorr, and that's an Amazon affiliate link) and my own milk and butter to while up an easy sauce inside, and let that sit while I grilled the asparagus and salmon. The hollandaise sauce just took it over the top.
Asparagus is one of my favorite Spring vegetables and my favorite ways to eat it do NOT involve water. No thanks, you can keep your Asparagus Steamer (Amazon affiliate link to a product I'll never buy and neither should you--unless your kitchen cupboards need filling). I prefer to roast or grill my asparagus. Alanna has a terrific tutorial on roasting asparagus here. Today I'll show you how I grill asparagus.
The right tools make any job easier, and grilling vegetables is no exception. I have 2 go to grilling tools--my beloved grill basket and a flat grilling pan (Amazon affiliate links to similar products, though I got mine at the thrift shop and at a Marshall's/TJMaxx respectively). For small or uneven pieces of vegetable like mushrooms, peppers, and cubed squash, I like the basket. For fragile or skinny vegetables like smashed potatoes and green beans I prefer the pan. This asparagus was big enough that I just laid them crossways on the grate without an issue.
For more recipes using asparagus, please see my Asparagus Recipes Collection. It's part of the Visual Recipe Index by Ingredient, a resource for folks like me eating from the farm share, the farmer's market, the garden, the neighbor's garden, and great deals on ugly produce at the grocery store.
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If you're planning to throw the farm share on the grill this year, make sure you've got the right tools. Just like using parchment paper takes the worry out of transferring a nicely-topped pizza into a hot oven, using the right grilling accessories helps you succeed outside.
We all want to feel success when we create food to nourish ourselves and our loved ones, don't we?
|These are purple asparagus in the foreground, and green asparagus in the back.|
Grilled Asparagus and Salmon with Dill Butter (serves 4)
- 2 large bunches of asparagus (you may have extras for snacks or pizza toppings)
- 2 to 3 Tablespoons vegetable oil or cooking fat of your choice
- salt (I use kosher)
- 1 pound salmon filets (I picked up ours at the local grocery salmon sidewalk sale)
- 2 teaspoons dill blend seasoning (I like Pampered Chef Dill Mix)
- 1+½ Tablespoons Dill Butter (recipe here)
- optional--make a hollandaise sauce while the grill is preheating. I used a packet as described above.
- Preheat the grill to high heat, scrape off any debris from the last grilling session, and reduce heat to medium. (These are instructions for a gas grill, by the way).
- Use a vegetable peeler to remove a few strips from the thick ends of the asparagus. In a large bowl, toss the asparagus with a Tablespoon of oil and a generous pinch (½ teaspoon or more) of salt.
- Brush the salmon skin with vegetable oil and sprinkle with a pinch of kosher salt. Flip the fish over, and brush the top of the fish with oil, sprinkle a pinch of salt, and season with about ¼ teaspoon of dill seasoning.
- Place the salmon, skin side down, onto the preheated grill. Lay the asparagus crossways on the grill, or if you've got skinny stems use a grill pan as described above. Close the grill.
- After 5 minutes, check the asparagus and roll it over. I do this with tongs. Flip the salmon over to grill the top, seasoned, side. Close the grill.
- After another 4 to 5 minutes, check the asparagus. It may need another roll or it may be fully tender--depends on how thick the spears are in your bunch. Remove asparagus back to that large bowl, and toss with 2 teaspoons of dill butter.
- Remove salmon from grill when fish lifts easily. Transfer to a plate, and top with dill butter. My dill butter was nearly frozen, and it melted into the hot fish as I was finishing up the photos you see.
- Serve--with optional hollandaise sauce if you've got some.