Coho, also known as “silver” salmon for its bright silver sides, offers a lighter, more distinctly flavoured fish than king or sockeye. Coho’s orange-red flesh is moderately fatty and flakes well.
“For fresh, it’s great to just think about what’s coming out of the garden,” says Laura Cole, owner and executive chef at 229 Parks in Alaska’s Denali National Park, who often grills her coho and crisps the skin. “Because it has a firmer flesh and brighter flavour because of lack of fat, you can pair it with fresh olive tapenade, or because the basil and arugula are coming in strong, do pesto.”
Lo suggests slowly poaching coho in olive oil for a softer textured fish.
Recommended preparations: grilled, broiled, sauteed, poached in oil or butter, and smoked.
Often found: Often smoked; in sushi as crispy salmon skin roll; as steaks, filets and whole at fish counters.
Availability: Year-round frozen; fresh mid-June through late October.
GRILLED COHO SALMON WITH SESAME CELERY RELISH
Always check salmon for bones. To do this, gently rub your hand over the flesh, going against the grain. The bones should be in a line running the length of the fish. Use tweezers or needle pliers to remove.
Start to finish: 20 minutes
- 4 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil, plus extra for brushing
- Kosher salt and ground black pepper
- 2 pounds coho salmon, skin on
- Toasted sesame seeds
Heat the grill to medium-high.
In a medium bowl, stir together the celery, scallions, garlic, lime zest and juice, and the toasted sesame oil. Season with salt and pepper, then set aside.
Brush the salmon on both sides with additional sesame oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cook the salmon on the grill for 3 minutes per side, or until cooked to desired doneness. Serve with the celery relish and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.
Nutrition information per serving: 250 calories; 100 calories from fat (40 per cent of total calories); 11 g fat (1.5 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 90 mg cholesterol; 3 g carbohydrate; 1 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 35 g protein; 290 mg sodium.