Cocoa and Coffee-Crusted Salmon with Maple Chipotle Glaze

One of my favorite Caribbean islands is Grand Cayman.  I spent a day with Chef Beny learning some of his specialities, and this was my favorite.  The sweet sauce perfectly complements the slight bitterness of the coffee and cocoa crust on the salmon.  The sauce can be made 2 or 3 days before you make the salmon, which makes it a great dish to serve at a dinner party.

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Ingredients (Serves 4)

Cocoa and Coffee Crust:
1/3 cup ground coffee
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp. chile powder
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. garlic salt
4 salmon fillets
2 tbsp. corn oil
3 tbsp. coconut oil

Maple Orange Glaze:
1 cup orange juice
1 cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp. chipotle in adobo sauce, chopped
1 tsp. orange zest
1/2 tsp. salt

Mango Salsa:
1 ripe mango, finely chopped
2 tbsp. red onion, finely chopped
1 tsp. jalapeno pepper, minced
1 tsp. Cilantro
1/4 cup red bell pepper, finely chopped
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt

Method: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a saucepan, combine orange juice, maple syrup, chipotles and orange zest.  Bring the maple syrup mixture to a low boil being careful not to let the glaze boil over. Continue cooking for about 30 minuets or until reduce by half and thickened. In a shallow dish, combine the coffee, cocoa powder, chile powder, brown sugar and garlic salt.  Coat one side of each salmon fillet with corn oil, sprinkle with salt then press into the cocoa coffee mixture.  Only coat the presentation side of the salmon fillets.  Set on a plate.  In a large ovenproof skillet, heat 3 tbsp. of coconut oil until very hot, over medium high heat.  Carefully lay each fillet, crusted side down onto skillet and let sear for 1 minute.  With tongs, lift the fillets and turn to sear other sides, about 2 minutes or until browned.  Put skillet into a 350 degree oven for 3-4 minutes, or until desired doneness. While the salmon finishes in the oven combine all ingredients for the mango salsa. To plate top salmon with glaze and mango salsa.

MainsSavanna Givens