This recipe is incredibly rich, but it's also extremely delicious. Remember how to make coffee vodka with an AeroPress? Try combining that with wild Alaskan sockeye salmon, 100% Madagascar chocolate and (of course) a bit more vodka. Yes, I admit: I decided to celebrate Labor Day with a dish rich enough to satisfy the discriminating palate of the Sun King. Viva la revolución!
If you're brave enough, here's what you need to make a melt-in-your-mouth main course for two:
Step 1: Line your baking dish with olive oil, place the salmon in the dish, and drizzle with coffee vodka liqueur. You may dilute the liqueur with vodka to taste (I feel like "dilute with vodka" should come in scare quotes there but seriously the extra Tito's sweetens and smooths the liqueur). I used 15 ml of liqueur and 30 ml of vodka drizzled on top, well mixed.
Step 2: Seal the vodka in by drizzling the the top of the salmon with olive oil and place it into bake at 250 F (121 C).
I used the top rack because we'll be broiling the salmon later and I'd rather not move a 250 degree oven rack around thank you very much.
Step 3: Reserve the chocolate chunks and refrain from eating them for 13 minutes while the salmon cooks (or until not quite done: the thermodynamics of your oven may differ from mine and salmon is a picky fish).
Seriously, though, don't eat the chocolate you are saving for the salmon. It is worth waiting...
Step 4: After 13 minutes pull the salmon out and add the chocolate on top. Turn the oven off and switch it to broil on high. Then stick the salmon back in for about 1 minute.
Now your oven should look like this:
This is important: don't overdo the salmon! Overdoing salmon may not actually qualify you for a place in Dante's Inferno but it is a wonderful way to waste good money. Remember: your salmon is done as soon as the flesh flakes clean. If it's still a bit sticky in the center that's fine; leave the fish covered on your counter for a couple of minutes and the center of the fish will cook up nicely.
The broiler will melt the chocolate into a glorious and delicious mess and you'll get something that looks like this:
That's it! You're ready to serve and enjoy one of the more delicious salmon experiences of your life. Seriously, this one grows on you. If you taste it and find it just a bit too rich at the first bite, drizzle perhaps a quarter of shot of vodka over the fish to finish. It spreads and carries the chocolate into the fish as you eat. Look for the fish and chocolate to nearly melt in your mouth. That little bit of coffee liqueur goes a long way: you'll find it hiding on the back of your palate as a subtle but important accent to round out the whole.
Once again, here's how it's done...
1. 8 oz wild Alaskan sockeye salmon fillet (if you don't live in the Pacific Northwest you could try either tuna or beef, although you'd need to adjust cooking time for beef)
3. 30 ml of Tito's vodka
4. approx. 15 g of Pralus Madagascar chocolate (any fine chocolate will do nicely)
5. olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 250 F (121 C).
2. Line a baking dish with olive oil and mix the liqueur and the vodka together.
3. Place the salmon in the dish, drizzle with the vodka liqueur mixture and seal with olive oil
4. Reserve chocolate and bake for approx. 13 minutes, or until salmon is nearly done.
5. Remove the salmon and add the chocolate on top. Drizzle with oil to seal.
6. Switch the oven to broil on high and put the salmon back in for about 1 minute.
7. Remove the salmon after 1 minute or as soon as it's done.
8. Cover the salmon and let it rest for a couple of minutes before serving.
9. Serve and enjoy! Add a tiny bit of vodka over the salmon if the flavor is too concentrated.