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caramelized grilled salmon

Expert's Note: Living on Lake Michigan, I enjoy a lot of salmon and you can only smoke so much of it, so I've had to become creative with how I prepare it. When preparing my grilled salmon recipe, I only use Kingsford charcoal as it's the only way to get the recipe right and the only way I have ever done it.
Makes: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes plus 2-3 hours for marinade
Cook time: 10-12 minutes



    • 1 large (1½ to 1¾ pounds) fillet of salmon, skin on
    • 1½ teaspoons coarse sea salt
    • 2 teaspoons dried dill weed
    • 2-3 tablespoons brown sugar


To prevent the salmon fillet from curling up on the grill, score the skin of the salmon by making three diagonal cuts across the back one way and three diagonal cuts the other way, creating a diamond pattern. Be careful to only cut the skin and not into the flesh.

In a large pan, sprinkle the sea salt over the meat side of the salmon fillet. Next sprinkle the dill weed over the salt. Finally, cover the dill with brown sugar. Cover the pan and refrigerate the salmon for 2-3 hours, allowing the salmon to cure and dissolve the brown sugar.

Place the salmon, skin side down, on a greased grill (olive oil applied with a paper towel works well) over indirect heat. (Note: this means that you place all the charcoal on one side of the grill. When the coals are ready, the food gets placed on the opposite side of the grill.) Cover the grill and cook for 10-12 minutes or until the salmon flakes when pierced with a folk. Do not flip when cooking.

Recipe created by avid griller Dennis Jost of Oak Creek, Wisc., on behalf of Kingsford charcoal

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