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Smoke and spice takes summer grilling to new heights

Five Pepper Salmon

Family Features | 8/23/2013, midnight
Five Pepper Salmon. Family Features

This summer, think inside the box—the smoke box, that is—and turn your grill into a backyard smoker by adding wood chips to impart flavorful depth to meats, seafood and vegetables. Pairing the right spice with the right wood quickly turns an ordinary cookout into an extraordinarily tasty outdoor feast.

“When you combine different spices and seasonings with various types of wood, you can add distinctive layers of flavor to all kinds of grilled foods,” said Chef Kevan Vetter of McCormick. “If you’re grilling fish—like salmon, for example—a great way to give the meal a unique, smoky flavor is to use pecan or mesquite wood chips. Then add a complementary seasoning like McCormick Grill Mates Fiery 5 Pepper Seasoning.”

Serve up this spicy, smoky recipe for Five Pepper Salmon, which pairs perfectly with a grilled corn succotash. For more smoke and spice pairings and tips to turn your gas or charcoal grill into a smoker, visit www.grillingflavorforecast.com. To connect with other grilling enthusiasts, join The Grillerhood at www.facebook.com/GrillMates.

Five Pepper Salmon

Prep Time: 10 minutes, cook time: 14 minutes, makes: 6 servings

  • 1 cup pecan or mesquite wood chips
  • 4 teaspoons McCormick Grill Mates Fiery 5 Pepper Seasoning
  • 4 teaspoons firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 pounds of salmon fillets
  • Olive oil

Soak wood chips in enough water to cover for one hour. Drain wood chips. Fill smoker box with wet wood chips. Place smoker box under grill rack on one side of grill. Close lid. Heat grill on high heat about 10 minutes until smoke appears from chips. Reduce heat to medium.

Mix seasoning and sugar in small bowl. Brush salmon lightly with oil. Rub generously with seasoning mixture.

Place salmon on grill. Close lid. Grill salmon 6 to 7 minutes per side or until fish flakes easily with a fork.