Try something new with seasonal salmon

Executive Chef Wayne Sych of Joe Fortes Seafood and Chop House offers his favourite salmon recipe for spicy salmon and corn salsa.

Wayne Sych offers tips on how to buy and cook restaurant Joe Fortes' signature fish dish

Chef Wayne Sych of Joe Fortes offers his favourite seasonal salmon recipie 5:31

It's wild salmon season in B.C. and the fish is a staple at most barbecue and dinner parties all over the province when the weather turns warm.

Wayne Sych is the executive chef of Joe Fortes Seafood and Chop House.

Here are his tips for buying local salmon:

  • the fish should smell like the ocean.
  • the eye should be clear.
  • the skin shouldn't me marked up — the scales should be shiny.
  • fillets are the easiest.
  • steak crosscuts are great for barbecues or pan searing.

Sych says he tries to play with flavours and bring something new to a traditional dish.

He showed guest host Jason D'Souza of Our Vancouver his spicy salmon dish, which has a bed of arugula and a spice blend of cumin, coriander, cinnamon, sugar, salt, paprika and cayenne pepper.

Spiced salmon with corn salad from the menu at Joe Fortes Seafood and Chop House. (CBC)

Don't overcook it

Sych says he uses medium heat to cook the dish and keeps some flesh inside the fish opaque to prevent overcooking. That means only cooking the fish a couple of minutes on each side on the barbecue or eight minutes in the oven.

Spiced salmon with corn salad

Serves 4

  • 4 x 170g salmon filets.
  • 30 ml olive oil.
  • 12 ml paprika.
  • 7 ml cinnamon.
  • 12 ml sugar.
  • 12 ml ground coriander.
  • 2.5 ml cayenne pepper.
  • 2.5 ml salt.
  • 240 ml fresh corn kernels.
  • 15 ml olive oil.
  • 15 ml fresh lime juice.
  • 100 ml green onions, sliced.
  • 45 ml chopped cilantro.
  • 10 ml minced jalapeno.
  • 2 roma tomatoes.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Remove the core from the tomatoes and cut an "X" on the bottom of the tomatoes. Place the tomatoes into the boiling water, let simmer for about one minute until peels start come loose at the "X."Plunge into ice water to cool. Remove peels from tomatoes by pulling from the "X" towards the top of the tomatoes. Cut the tomatoes in half-length wise and gently squeeze the seeds out of the tomatoes. Chop the tomatoes into small cubes, set aside.

Heat the 15ml olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the corn and sauté until the corn starts to brown and caramelize, about 3-5 minutes. Remove from the pan and let cool. Toss the corn with the tomatoes, green onions, cilantro, jalapeno and lime juice and season with salt.

Mix together the paprika, cinnamon, sugar, ground coriander, cayenne pepper and salt. 

Heat the 30ml olive oil in a large non-stick pan over medium heat. Pat the salmon filets dry and gently press the spice mixture on the top of the salmon filets and shake off excess spice. Place salmon, spice side down in sauté pan and sear until dark golden brown, 3-4 minutes. Turn salmon over and continue cooking until salmon is medium or until desired doneness. Remove from heat, spoon corn salad over top of salmon.