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Yukon River: The alpha and the omega of salmon

Post by News Tribune Staff on July 10, 2008 at 9:17 am | No Comments »
July 10, 2008 9:17 am

Yukon River king salmon, with chimichurri and corn, on my deck.

I fell asleep soon after dinner last night. Fitting, since dinner was a dream.

Now that the ice in Alaska’s Yukon River has melted and the Eskimos have taken their share of the fish, Yukon River king salmon are in markets and restaurants. I bought a filet at Johnny’s Seafood in Tacoma yesterday.

It was $35.99 a pound. Johnny’s fishmonger said it would be a buck higher today.

I brushed the fish with my dad’s chimichurri (parsley, garlic, red peppers, red wine vinegar and olive oil) and broiled it, leaving the thickest part rare and cool in the center. I de-cobbed two ears of corn I’d bought at Mosby Farms in Auburn, sautéed the kernels in butter and mixed the corn with a few spoonfuls of chimichurri.

I went to bed hoping I’d dream up a fabulous description for my dinner. I woke up wordless, still dreaming about dinner.

The fish smelled and tasted like the cradle of the rivers and the seas.

The leading edge of a fork tine flaked the flesh.

The flesh barely needed chewing. It was as if this fish – one that stored up enough sustaining body fat to make a 2,000-mile trek to its spawning ground – wanted to slither down my gullet.

If the oils in salmon flesh could power an SUV, humans would wage war over this fish.

Thankfully, Yukon River salmon abound with the good kinds of oils – heart-healthy blah, blah, blah.

I got plenty of sleep last night. But I don’t think I’ve had enough Yukon River salmon yet.

Farming and growing
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