Pride of Bristol Bay planked salmon

Cedar Plank Grilled Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon with Sweet Potatoes

SERVES 4
PREP TIME 10 minutes
COOK TIME 15 minutes
INGREDIENTS

Cedar planks (available in seafood section of supermarket) with enough surface area for salmon
4 Alaska Salmon fillets (4 to 6 oz. each), fresh, thawed or frozen
Olive oil spray
1 Tablespoon fresh (or 1 teaspoon dried) favorite herb for salmon (dill, thyme, rosemary, etc.)
Salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
4 large sweet potatoes, sliced lengthwise into wedges
1/2 Tablespoon ground cumin

DIRECTIONS

Soak cedar planks for 1 to 2 hours (or overnight) submerged in water.  Remove and pat dry.

Heat grill to medium heat (400°F).  Rinse any ice glaze from frozen Alaska Salmon under cold running water; pat dry with a paper towel.  Spray cedar planks and salmon with olive oil spray.  Place salmon on planks; sprinkle with herbs, salt and pepper.  Place sweet potatoes in a bowl; spray with cooking spray.  Sprinkle with cumin, salt and pepper, to taste.  Toss to coat.

Place cedar planks and potato wedges onto grill.  Cover and cook about 3 to 4 minutes; turn wedges over and continue cooking until potatoes are soft and cooked. Keep warm.  Cook salmon 12 to 15 minutes, just until fish is opaque throughout.

NUTRIENTS PER SERVING

350 calories, 10.5g total fat, 1.5g saturated fat, 27% calories from fat, 91mg cholesterol, 33g protein, 33g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 277mg sodium, 36mg calcium and 1700mg omega-3 fatty acids.

Recipe via Alaska Seafood
Recipe by Ryan and Sara Hall.  
Recommended side dish: Massaged Kale Salad with Goat Cheese

Sara’s Tip: We found slicing the sweet potatoes vertically (into coins) helps keep them from falling through the grill grate.  For larger “coins,”  microwave them briefly before grilling so they cook through without burning on the outside.  Of course, sweet potato fries can also be roasted in an oven preheated to 400°F.  Cook for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through.

Boat life

A Day in Bristol Bay

Boat mornings are not too different from a morning in central Pennsylvania or Jackson Hole. There’s the slow rise of the sun, the hot coffee, greetings from nearby friends or family. But, on the boat in the middle of Bristol Bay, there’s something else…a little something else that makes the summer feel special. 

On Bristol Bay mornings, there’s engine room checks, tide-table readings, radio listening then there’s the coffee and oatmeal. Very quickly afterwards, the stillness of morning is replaced by hydraulic motors, lapping tides, chatting crew, radio talk and the swishy sound of salmon landing in the boat’s refrigerated seawater bins.

Somewhere between that quiet time and the action of a fishing set, there comes an indescribable moment. It’s not far from that feeling of waking up disoriented, in a place you don’t recognize. In that moment, the understanding that you are one of the lucky few who gets to call this work, or July, or livelihood appears. It’s the space in the day when you realize you are witness to the astonishing phenomenon of one of the world’s last wild food sources, one that is becoming more and more unique. 

This is why when we spend so much of our year talking about the just six or seven weeks that we spend on the water. There’s just something about it, and we welcome you to be apart of it by enjoying the gift of salmon that this work provides. 

Reserve your share of 2019 salmon today: prideofbristolbay.com.

Thank you

Thank You from the Pride of Bristol Bay Crew

We want to extend a wholehearted thank you to everyone who has purchased wild-caught sockeye salmon through Pride of Bristol Bay this season. It was quite a year, and your support means the world to us. It wouldn’t have been a success without you!

We’re getting ready to head up to Alaska (spoiler alert: we can’t wait to get fishing), because, believe it or not, the 2019 season is almost upon us! The run is expected to be great this year – possibly not quite as large as last year – but we will certainly be returning with more than enough to share.

If you have a freezer full of salmon and are in need of recipes, head over to our blog. We have some great recipes, as well as articles full of tips, tricks, and updates from the crew here at Pride of Bristol Bay. Additionally, head on over to prideofbristolbay.com and hover over “The Daily Catch” to read the articles of interest. Lastly, if you live in one of the buying club locations, pre-orders are open. Click here for more information on dates and locations.

Once more, we would like to extend a warm THANK YOU to everyone who continues to support Bristol Bay and the fight against Pebble Mine [http://www.savebristolbay.org/]. We hope to see you this fall!

Bristol Bay Alaska

Wheels Up: Bristol Bay Bound

Captain Steve spent last week in Naknek, Alaska, the F/V Ava Jane’s winter home. This time of year, the boatyard is crawling out of its winter hibernation. In a month, it will be bustling with activity, especially at high tide, as boat after boat gets launched into the bay in order to start fishing.

Steve wanted to get a head start on a few boat projects, so he headed up early, to prepare on a quiet boatyard, where he can get some work done, instead of visiting with the whole fleet at the cannery Mug-Up. To get a taste of the tundra landscape at the coastal Bristol Bay boatyard days, check out this video that Filson made in the Dillingham boatyard last year.  

As of recently, the overall state forecast for wild Alaska salmon is exceptional: experts predict a catch of 213.2 million fish statewide. In Bristol Bay, the 2018 season broke records – the sockeye salmon harvest was 10% above predictions and the largest seen on record. Last year will be a tough year to beat. However, experts are still predicting historically large returns following a banner year, and a 2019 forecast of 40.18 million sockeye returning to Bristol Bay. This is still 16% above the average run (1963-2018). Most importantly, the Alaska Department of Fish & Game predictions expect “all [Bristol Bay river systems] to meet their spawning escapement goals,” meaning that the health of the overall run and ecosystem is looking sustainably strong. We are thrilled.

No matter the forecast, the pre-season work remains the same. The boatyard is waking up, and the salmon are heading back to their original spawning grounds. The Pride of Bristol Bay team is getting ready to fish!

May 2019 Pebble Mine Update

This week we are celebrating a small victory in the fight against Pebble Mine! Thanks to the efforts of many individuals, the public comment period has been extended an extra 30 days!

At Pride of Bristol Bay, we believe it is essential to celebrate the small victories within this fight of our lives to protect Bristol Bay. The whole Bristol Bay community– you included!– now has until June 29th to collect as many signatures as we can to tell the Army Corps of Engineers that their Draft EIS statement is insufficient and send a strong signal that we believe in the environmental sustainability of Bristol Bay. You can do that right now, click here!

Significantly, this is also encouraging news coming from the Alaska Senatorial offices of Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, who have both been previously wishy-washy on the Pebble Mine issue. It is hopeful that both have spoken out with this concern, and we will continue to pressure them to listen to the majority of their constituents during the next year or more of this process.

That being said, Commercial Fishermen for Bristol Bay (CFBB) are demanding more and calling this skinny 30-day extension a “slap in the face.” CFBB Representative and Dillingham resident Holly Wysocki shared the following in the Commercial Fishermen for Bristol Bay press release.

“An extra 30 days does nothing to change the fact that Pebble’s federal permitting process is fundamentally flawed, including a Draft EIS with unacceptable information gaps. There is not enough real substance in the Draft EIS to warrant this process moving forward any further, which is why Bristol Bay’s commercial fishermen continue to request that the Army Corps suspend this process until our questions and concerns are addressed,” said Commercial Fishermen for Bristol Bay representative and local resident Holly Wysocki. “We risk our lives fishing each summer in Bristol Bay; the least we deserve is a fair and rigorous permitting process.”

Learn more about Holly and her family in this video. We look forward to sharing more fishermen’s stories with you this spring and summer. Submit your comment today! Additionally, we have extended the sale of our Wildly Devoted Dinner Box. Order one today and join us in being Wildly Devoted. We threw a dinner party and had a great time – time to plan that June BBQ to bring friends and family together around this important issue. Eat well and bring meaning to your meal.

Bristol Bay

FEATURED ARTICLE: My Search for the World’s Best Salmon

By, John O’Connor with Gene Food

In light of the very real concerns about the farming methods used to raise most of the “Atlantic Salmon” you find in the grocery stores (and on restaurant menus), how can consumers find salmon they can trust?

I did a little research to come up with some answers.

Bristol Bay is Your Place for Salmon

And as I read more about where the best US salmon comes from, Bristol Bay Alaska kept coming up again and again. Turns out Bristol Bay is fed by multiple relatively pristine river systems that are home to a number of wild salmon species. The region has been called the “crown jewel” of the American commercial fishing industry, and at least historically, the eco system is sustainable. Even accounting for the 61 million salmon it pulls from the region each year, the fishing industry in Bristol Bay doesn’t decimate the salmon population, they still make their way from the ocean to the rivers and streams where they were born to spawn and reproduce with enough fervor to keep the whole machine churning.4

It’s an incredible system for both the natives, who benefit from the 480 million in annual revenue, as well as the fish population, which has been protected to a degree from environmental encroachment. Unfortunately, Trump administration roll backs of previous EPA protections, could pave the way for a massive gold and copper mine in Bristol Bay that many believe would ruin one of America’s last great natural fisheries. The decision as to whether protections will be rescinded is pending before the EPA.5

The EPA published a massive document analyzing the state of the Bristol Bay fishing industry, complete with an estimation of the environmental impact of the proposed mine. I’ve dropped in some of the highlights below:

  • The Bristol Bay watershed supports large carnivore species which rely on salmon, such as brown bears and wolves.
  • All five species of Pacific salmon: sockeye, Chinook, coho, chum and pink, are living in Bristol Bay as are 29 other native fish species.
  • Of the 31 native Alaskan villages in the region, an estimated 25 depend on the salmon industry for their economic survival. Bristol Bay salmon is to Alaska what the car industry is to Detroit.

At the end of the day, I picked a company called the Pride of Bristol Bay for my order. I reached out to them direct for an informal interview and published the results from Steve, the owner of the operation, below. Can’t say the answers were all that insightful, but there are some nuggets here, especially as it pertains to water quality in Bristol Bay. Essentially, the waters, which are free of industry and always have been, are pristine, but that all changes once that copper mine goes in…

Click here for the full article from Gene Food.