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Spice Up Your Salmon with Chili & Lime

Grilled Salmon with Chili and Lime Butter

In an effort to eat healthy, we can all get a little bored. Same old chicken, same old fish. The easy way out is just to dump some barbecue sauce on whatever you’ve grilled and call it a day. And try not to think about all the sugar you just drowned your dinner in.

But there are better ways to spice up the routine of chicken, fish and lean meats. Fresh salsa is always a good idea, as are balsamic vinaigrettes. And then there’s butter.

That’s right, butter. A little bit, seasoned with some herbs isn’t going to overload your dinner with too many calories, especially if you’re careful about what veggies and sides you’re making.

For the butter:

1/4 lb. (8 Tbs.) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
3 Tbs. finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 tsp. fresh lime juice
1 tsp. coriander seeds, lightly toasted and coarsely ground
3/4 tsp. freshly grated lime zest
1/2 tsp. coarse sea salt, like fleur de sel or sel gris
1/2 tsp. piment d’Espelette chile powder or crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp. minced garlic
For the salmon:

1-1/2 Tbs. olive oil; more for brushing the grill
Four to six 1-1/4-inch-thick salmon steaks (6 to 8 oz. each)
1 tsp. kosher salt
Make the butter:
Beat the butter in a small bowl with a spoon to loosen it. Mix in the remaining ingredients until they’re evenly distributed. Scrape the butter onto a sheet of parchment or plastic wrap and roll it into a neat log, using the parchment or plastic as a guide. Twist the ends and refrigerate the butter until firm, about 1 hour. Keep the butter chilled until ready to use.

Grill the salmon:
Clean and oil the grates on a gas grill and heat the grill to medium high, or prepare a medium-hot charcoal fire.

Meanwhile, generously coat both sides of the salmon with the oil and season both sides with salt. Let the salmon sit at room temperature for 15 minutes (while the grill heats). Grill the salmon steaks directly over the heat source (covered on a gas grill, uncovered on a charcoal grill), without touching, until they have good grill marks, 2 to 4 minutes. Flip the steaks and grill until the second sides have good grill marks and the fish is done to your liking, another 2 to 4 minutes. (Check for doneness by slicing into one of the thicker pieces.) When the salmon is nearly done, remove the butter from the refrigerator and slice it into thin rounds.

The second the salmon comes off the grill, top each steak with two rounds of butter. Serve immediately.

Visit Fine Cooking for the full article and serving suggestions.

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