Smoked Atlantic Salmon
Have you ever hot smoked Atlantic salmon filets? If not then follow this easy recipe for some delectable results. No need to brine the salmon - just use some of your favorite seafood seasoning and let your wood pellet smoker-grill do the rest.
- Atlantic skinless salmon filets
- Seasonings of your choice
- Garlic salt, lemon pepper, old bay
- Preheat your wood pellet smoker-grill to 180ºF with cookinpellets.com Premium Perfect Mix wood pellets
- Place the seasoned salmon on a teflon grill mat
- Smoke the salmon filets for an hour at 180ºF
- After an hour, bump the pit temperature to 225ºF
- Rest smoked salmon for 5 minutes before serving
Served with a side of steamed zucchini, yellow squash, and broccoli
Perfect Mix Smoked USDA Prime Tri Tip
Here's the easiest way to provide your family and friends with the most delicious smoked tri tip they'll ever have that will practically melt in your mouth. Prepare a Tri Tip by following the trimming and seasoning steps listed in my Whole Peeled USDA Prime Tri Tips post.
- One 2 to 2½ lb seasoned USDA Prime Tri Tip
- Asparagus, onion, mushrooms
- Preheat your wood pellet smoker-grill to 230ºF using cookinpellets.com Premium Perfect Mix wood pellets
- Place the seasoned Tri Tip on a teflon grill mat
- The teflon grill mat prevents the meat from sticking to the grates
- Smoke the USDA Prime Tri Tip for 2 to 2½ hours until the internal temperature reaches 145ºF
- Times a for planning purposes only ... always cook to internal temperatures
- Rest loosely under a foil tent for 10 minutes
- Slice thinly against the grain on the bias
To keep it low carb I served the tri tip with some sautéed asparagus, onions, and mushrooms. There's no carbs in the tri tip.
Whole Peeled USDA Prime Tri Tips
Buying Whole Peeled USDA Prime Tri Tip roasts in a cryovaced package is a great way to save $3 to $5 a pound and will save you a lot of time trimming off the fat cap. Peeled tri tips have the fat cap already removed.
My Costco sells USDA Choice grade and Prime grade Tri Tips. We, on the West Coast, are very familiar with this cut of beef which comes from the bottom butt sirloin subprimal. It is a small triangular muscle, usually 1½ to 2½ lbs per side of beef. But in other parts of the country many butchers have never heard of a tri tip and often try to pass off other cuts for them.
I personally do not subscribe to the theory that the "Fat Cap" provides great flavor and bastes the meat during cooking. This theory is also held by many concerning briskets and pork butts. All in all, you have two options when smoking/cooking meat with the fat cap. Fat cap up or down. Up in order to baste the meat or down in order to keep the meat from burning. Either way the fat cap prevents the seasoning from working it's magic in the portion of the meat that's covered.
The cryovaced package above contained 5 peeled tri tips. I not only prefer to have the fat cap removed for me but I also carry it one step further and always remove all silver skin. The center photo shows the peeled tri tips and the right side photo shows them after I've removed the silver skin. You won't be sorry for removing the silver skin because you can't chew or eat the silver skin and it prevents any seasonings from penetrating the meat. Before purchasing large portions of meat you should own a vacuum sealer. Properly vacuumed sealed and frozen meat will last many months in the freezer.
My recommend rubbing the trimmed tri tips with extra virgin olive oil and liberally seasoning them with my "Pete's Western Rub" found on page 169 of my cookbook "The Wood Pellet Smoker & Grill Cookbook". I vacuum sealed 4 of the tri tips and wrapped the 5th in plastic wrap which I refrigerated overnight to be smoked ... Smoked tri tip - it doesn't get any better than that!!
Low Carb Pesto Chicken Casserole
This Low Carb Pesto Chicken Casserole is a great way to add cauliflower to your repertoire of recipes. I must admit that I've never used Basil pesto over the years for anything so this was my maiden use of the product. I have however tasted many samples of ravioli at Costco which were served with pesto and enjoyed them. You'll enjoy this easy recipe which uses leftover chicken.
- ½ smoked or rotisserie chicken, cubed
- 1 medium head of cauliflower cut into florets
- ¾ cup Basil pesto (I used Kirkland Basil pesto)
- ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
- 3 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese (divided)
- ½ tsp granulated garlic
- ½ tsp pink salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Preheat oven to 400ºF and spray a 9 x 13 inch foil pan with nonstick spray
- Place cauliflower florets in a gallon ziploc® bag
- Season the cauliflower florets with the olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper
- Shake the bag until florets are fully covered
- Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper
- Roast the cauliflower florets for 18 - 20 minutes until al dente
- Reduce the oven temperature to 375ºF
- Combine the pesto and heavy cream until smooth
- In a medium bowl, mix the chicken, cauliflower, pesto mixture, and 1½ cups Mozzarella cheese
- Pour all ingredients in the 9 x 13 foil pan
- Cover the casserole with the remaining 1½ cups of Mozzarella cheese
- Bake at 375ºF for 20minutes until bubbly and the cheese is melted
Serve with a side of green salad
Low Carb Beef and Pork Shephard’s Pie
This Low Carb Beef and Pork Shepherd's Pie is my tweak on the old classic recipe topped with a cheesy mashed cauliflower instead of the traditional mashed potato variation. I chose to use a combination of ground beef and pork sausage for that extra twist.
- 1 lb 80/20% ground beef
- 1 lb Jimmy Dean Pork sausage
- 1 batch of cheesy mashed cauliflower
- 1 medium red onion, diced
- 16 oz baby bella mushrooms, sliced
- 1/2 cup beef broth
- 2/3 cup sour cream
- 1/3 cup mascarpone cheese
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 3 tsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp granulated garlic
- 1/2 tsp garlic salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400ºF
- Spray 9 x 13 casserole dish with nonstick spray
- Brown the ground beef, pork sausage, onion, and mushrooms in a large frying pan
- Use medium-high heat
- Season with garlic, salt, and pepper
- Combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl except the cheesy mashed cauliflower
- Add the meat mixture, vegetables and mix until well combined
- Pour the mixture into the casserole dish and spread evenly
- Add the cheesy mashed cauliflower over the meat mixture
- Spread the mashed cauliflower evenly
- Bake at 400ºF for 35 minutes until mashed cauliflower is golden brown
- Rest for 5 minutes before serving
Serve with a nice green salad