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Thai Red Curry And Brown Sugar-Rubbed Salmon With Avocado Crema

Posted by mmillet on September 1, 2013

Caramelized Brown Sugar Thai Red Curry-Rubbed Salmon

Deviating from those tried and trusted classic seasonings can be intimidating. But, fear not. We are here to be your flavor safety net and wipe away any hesitance and misconceptions that you may have about the fabulous new additions to the famed Traeger spice family. We'll highlight some excellent recipes for you to make to break in these robust rubs. They are definitely risks worth the reward.

Whether you love curry or aren't really fond of it, our new Thai Red Curry Rub will impress you on beef, chicken or fish and everything in between. We've fine-tuned the seasoning so that it's not overwhelming but gives dimension, spice and a little heat to any protein. To get you started, we modified a brown sugar-chili caramelized salmon recipe with an avocado crema from canyoustayfordinner.com. We added in our Thai Red Curry Rub as well as some coconut milk and cilantro to really bring the flavors home. Just like those potato chips we all love, you will not be able to stop after one bite.


PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 8 minutes
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Alder, Apple or Cherry


For the avocado crema:
1 avocado, peeled and pitted
5 tablespoons coconut milk
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice (about the juice of 1 lime)
1 garlic clove 
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, stemmed
1/2 teaspoon salt

For the salmon:
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon Traeger Thai Red Curry Rub
½ teaspoon salt
A pinch cayenne pepper
4 5-ounce salmon filets
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 lime, sliced into wedges

In a blender or food processor, combine the avocado, coconut milk, lime juice, garlic, cilantro, and salt, and pulse until smooth.

The consistency should be similar to cake batter--thick yet spreadable. To thin it if necessary, add a tablespoon or two of water or coconut milk and pulse to incorporate. Cover and set aside until ready to serve. The crema can be made up to 1 day in advance if covered and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Avocado Crema

When you're ready to cook, start the Traeger on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4 to 5 minutes). Place a 12-inch (or whatever size you have) cast iron pan on the grill grate to preheat with the grill. Preheat to High heat with the lid closed for 10 to 15 minutes.

Traeger Tip - If you're working with a whole filet of salmon, you'll get more even cooking if you trim off the thinner edge of the salmon before cutting it into smaller fillets.

Caramelized Brown Sugar Thai Red Curry-Rubbed Salmon

In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, Traeger Thai Red Curry Rub, salt, and the cayenne pepper. Lay the salmon filets on a work surface and sprinkle the brown sugar mixture evenly over each filet, rubbing it into the flesh on all sides.

Pour 1 tablespoon of oil into the cast iron pan on the Traeger. Add 2 of the salmon filets (skin-side-up if they have skin on) and cook, undisturbed, until the underside is crisp and just beginning to blacken, about 4 minutes.

Caramelized Brown Sugar Thai Red Curry-Rubbed Salmon

Flip the filets and cook an additional 4 minutes, until the fish feels firm to the touch.

Remove to a plate immediately. Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan and swirl to coat. Add the remaining 2 filets (or more) of salmon and repeat the cooking process.

Caramelize the lime wedges by either adding them in during the last minute of the salmon cooking or throw them into the empty pan after the salmon is finished. Let the limes cook for 30 seconds on one side. Flip and cook for an additional 30 seconds.

Caramelized Brown Sugar Thai Red Curry-Rubbed Salmon

To serve, divide the salmon filets onto individual plates and spoon 2 generous tablespoons of crema over each. Finish with a squeeze of the lime and some fresh cilantro.

Caramelized Brown Sugar Thai Red Curry-Rubbed Salmon