After 11 years, M and I arrived back home in the Northwest, specifically, the Seattle area. After getting moved and settled, our first outing together was, naturally, food based.
We headed for downtown Seattle and started at Salumi for lunch; since we were going shopping and had been absent for so long, getting fortified beforehand is always wise…
Salumi is famous for their sausage and rightfully so. That said, it’s tiny and easy to miss; here’s the store front:
The way you find it is by looking for this; the big line out front.
What you get is simply perfect. Go ahead and just try to go without taking some snausage home with you.
Truth be told, there’s just been a pregnant pause while I headed for the fridge to snag salumi, bread and dijon mustard…
Fortified, we headed for, naturally, the Pike Place Market. “Tourist trap!” you yowl? Yeah, I s’pose so, but on the other hand, if you lived downtown and didn’t shop here on a daily basis, what kind of twit would you be? So suspend your disdain and dive in; there’s a reason some of these vendors have been here for many decades. And besides that, it’s gorgeous.
We were after fish, of course, as anyone in their right mind deprived of great seafood for a decade plus would be. Pure Food Fish Co., here since 1911, is an example of all that is great about the market. Super fresh, friendly, and absolutely willing to do as much or as little to your catch as you want them to.
We were after Salmon, naturally, so it was time to choose. In the Pacific northwest, you have five primary varieties of Salmon; King, Sockeye, Coho, Pink, and Chum. They can also be called, in the same order, Chinook, Red, Silver, Humpback and Dog.
What does all this stuff mean and are there genuine differences between them, you ask? Yeah, there are, and they do mean something worth knowing.
King is just that, the best tasting, fattiest flesh with the most melt-in-your-mouth texture there is, hands down. Sockeye is not far behind, truth be told, and there are plenty of folks who chose this variety first every time. Silvers, which run quite shallow in the fall and fight like all get out, may be “Middle of the Pack” salmon, but for me they’re #1. Pink and Chum are not the top of the heap in terms of taste, color, or texture, though Chum roe is highly prized for sushi and likely the most oft harvested.
After looking everybody over, we went with local, wild caught red King. Planning, as usual, to do several meals with this gorgeous fish, we bought a whole and had it fileted. Had we more fridge and kitchen space, we’d have asked to have the rack and head bagged up and taken it home to make stock with.
Having accomplished so much so quickly, (Ahem…), we stopped into a peaceful Uli’s Famous Sausage and Bierstube for a refreshing lager. And speaking of snasauge, had we not done Salumi, we sure would’ve dove in here, as you better if you’ve not already!
Next came Frank's Produce yielded new potatoes, Walla Walla sweet onions, fresh green beans and lemons. Off we go!
A final stop at Pears for a bottle of Mountain Dome bubbly and we’re good to go.
So, back at the ranch, simple rules the roost.
The veggies are rinsed and dried, tossed in extra virgin olive oil, diced shallot, salt and pepper and then roasted.
A filet goes on a broiling rack, then gets a simple baste of unsalted butter, lemon juice, brown sugar and bourbon. Into a 350 oven, we allow 10 minutes for each inch of thickness, measured at the thickest part of the filet. The thinner end is turned to the slightly cooler side of the oven, thick part to the middle.
With lightly toasted local sourdough to sop up juices, that, as the saying goes, is that.
Next time, round 1 of leftovers!