BIÂN Chef Ryan Maher's Seared Ora King Salmon Recipe With Grilled Peppers, Eggplant & Chimichurri by Belinda Lichty Clarke
BIÂNis a new members’ only club in Chicago that’s got it all, including a health club, classes, co-working space, a med-spa, a doctor's office – and a gourmet restaurant. But this is not just a health club, and one of the big draws for members is the culinary experience led by Chef Ryan Maher.
Ryan Maher, Chef de Cuisine, BIÂN, began baking with his mother at 5 years old. That early passion for cooking led him to culinary school at Kendall College and a job at the Peninsula Hotel. In 2014 he met his mentor, Chef Lee Wolen of James Beard Award Winning Boka Restaurant Group, which began a journey with him at the Michelin-starred The Lobby at the Peninsula, Michelin-starred Boka, and Somerset.
In 2020, Ryan accepted the position of Chef de Cuisine at BIÂN, a job that utilizes all of Ryan’s special skills sets: flexibility of cuisine, managing a team and curating a menu that is symmetrical to the restaurant’s ethos. Here is Chef Maher's Seared Ora King Salmon With Grilled Peppers, Eggplant and Chimichurri recipe!
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours
- 6.5-ounce piece of Ora King salmon, skinned and de-boned
- grilled shishito and jimmy nardello peppers
- Chinese eggplant conserva
- charred eggplant puree
- picked dill, parsley and cilantro
- 5 green onions, grilled and finely chopped
- 1 jalapeno seeded, grilled and finely chopped
- 1 bulb garlic, finely grated
- 1 tablespoon Aleppo pepper
- 3 tablespoons chopped capers, with their juice
- 1 bunch cilantro, finely chopped with stems
- 2 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 bunch parsley, leaves picked and finely chopped
- 2 cups extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pinch ground cumin
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
Here's how to make it:
- For the peppers, remove the stems and seeds, toss in olive oil, season with salt and grill over high heat. Find the hottest spot on your grill so that the skin of the peppers can char a bit without overcooking.
- For the puree, remove the stem of the eggplant, and slice in half lengthwise. Toss the halved eggplant in olive oil, season with salt and roast at 425 degrees F in the oven until the skin starts to char. Transfer to a high-speed blender and blend on high while streaming about 1 ounce of olive oil through the lid of the blender. Blend until smooth. Season with salt to taste.
- For the conserva: This method is a tasty and versatile way to preserve most vegetables. Slice the Chinese eggplant to 1/8-inch rounds. Combine 1 cup rice wine vinegar, 1 cup water, 1/4 cup honey and a pinch of salt in a saucepot. Bring this liquid to a boil. Cook the eggplant in this liquid until it becomes somewhat transparent and loses some, but not all, of its structure (or about 30 seconds). Strain the eggplant from it's liquid and cover it completely with extra virgin olive oil. The eggplant has now been cooked, pickled and submerged in oil to be used later on.
- For the chimichurri, combine all the ingredients and season with salt and honey to taste.
- For the salmon, preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Season the salmon evenly on all sides with salt. Heat a pan dressed with 1 ounce of olive oil until the oil begins to ripple. Sear the salmon flesh side down. Leave this pan on the heat until the salmon begins to caramelize on it's edges. At this point transfer the pan to the oven and cook to medium (roughly 6 to 8 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 135 degrees F).
- To plate, place a spoon-sized dollop of the puree on the plate. Place the seared Ora King salmon beside it. Dress the fish with the grilled peppers, eggplant conserva, chimichurri and picked herbs.
Note: Why do we use Ora King salmon? This salmon is of the highest quality with naturally high amounts of fat and omega 3s.
Photo Chef Ryan Maher, Chef de Cuisine, BIÂN
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