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diy salmon ala giggles

September 1, 2011


There were two times in my life I lived walking distance from the Great Minnesota Get Together. My college budget shouldn’t have allowed it, and my memory is perhaps foggy, but when I say I walked over to the Fair for dinner almost every night that first summer living off-campus, I may actually be underselling it. My favorite fair visit is a short burst of time full of different things (also? I don’t like that full to exploding feeling, so to accommodate all of my Fair food needs, a multiple day strategy must be deployed). In the last few years, the day I look most forward to is the Giggles Campfire Grill dinner day. Their walleye cakes are divine, and would be worth the walk to the far north side of the grounds alone. But the salmon-on-a-stick. Oh, the salmon…. A thick chunk of maple-glazed smoked salmon (that is technically sporting a skewer, though it is still served in a ‘boat’), is bedecked with a raspberry chipotle sauce and served with 2 rye crisp crackers slathered with cream cheese. It is, hands down, my favorite Fair dinner for many years running. A few nights ago, we decided to take a stab at a DIY ‘inspired by’ version of this treat. Maple-glazed baked salmon stood in for the smoked version, and the riff on a raspberry chipotle sauce I created was a bit thicker with more seeds than the official version, but it mattered not at all. It was a masterpiece of taste that I’m sure will be finding its way into our permanent dinner rotation.


raspberry chipotle sauce

(adapted from Emeril’s Raspberry Chipotle Glaze)

  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 tbsp diced onion
  • 1 teaspoon pressed garlic
  • 1 pint fresh raspberries, rinsed
  • 4 tbsp raspberry vinegar
  • 6 tbsp white sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/8 – 1/4 tsp dried chipotle powder*
Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until they’re caramelized (stir pretty constantly), then add the garlic. Cook onions and garlic together for a minute or so, then add the raspberries. Continue cooking (and stirring) until the raspberries are softish, then add the raspberry vinegar, sugar and chipotle powder. Bring the whole thing up to a boil, then reduce to low heat and simmer for 10 minutes or so (until it reduces enough to have the consistency you like for sauce)

* A note on the chipotle powder: I have a tender Scandinavian palate, so we used just enough of the dried chipotle powder we had on hand to give the sauce some heat (which ended up being pretty similar to the mild heat index of Giggles’ sauce). If you are more hard core than me, this could easily be amped up.

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