Emile L. Stieffel IV's

 This is my son's recipe that he entered in the Johnson and Wales 2008 Chef of the Year High School Contest

Cajun Asian Roasted Atlantic Salmon Filet with Pirogues of Dipping Sauces
Yield – 4 Dinner Servings


4 leeks
2 pounds boneless and skinless Atlantic salmon filet

2 teaspoons red pepper flakes                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
½ teaspoon Peychaud’s bitters
1 teaspoon white pepper
1 tablespoon minced fresh dill weed
1 teaspoon Kosher sea salt
1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
1 tablespoon capers

Method of Preparation

1.      Wash the leeks.  Slice white portion of leeks 1/16” thick, push out leeks to form rings.  Discard roots and retain green tops.

2.      Combine and whisk the marinade ingredients in a mixing bowl.

3.      Pour half of the marinade into a ½ sized - 2” hotel pan, place filet on top of marinade. Add leek rings and green tops; pour remaining marinade over the filet.  Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.

4.      On preheated barbecue pit, place the foiled pecan smoke bag on top of a section of coals.  Arrange green leek tops on grill in a tight, long pattern the length of the filet and directly over the coals. Place the salmon filet on top of the green leek tops, Place leek rings on top of salmon filets.  Close lid. Retain marinade. 

5.      Roast for 8 - 10 minutes or until leek rings are lightly browned.  The outer edges of the filet should be browned, and somewhat over-done while the thick center should be medium rare.  Remove all in one piece from grill and cover with foil.


Cajun Reduction Dipping Sauce


Reserved Salmon Marinade

1.      Add marinade to a 1 quart sauce pan.  Bring to a simmer and reduce by 1/3. 


Gris Gris Seasoning



1 teaspoon dry wasabi powder

2 teaspoon granulated garlic

1 teaspoon sea salt

4 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon white pepper

1 teaspoon mustard powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper


Method of Preparation

1.      Combine all ingredients in a small mixing bowl.



MawMaw’s Fig Coulis



3 tablespoons Cajun fig preserves

1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar (sushi grade)

½ teaspoon Chinese red chili sauce

½ teaspoon sea salt

2 teaspoons teriyaki sauce

½ teaspoon minced pickled ginger


Method of Preparation

1.      Combine all ingredients in a small mixing bowl.


Asian Glass Noodles



2 quarts water

6 ounces dry glass noodles

¼ cup sake wine

1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar (sushi grade)

½ teaspoon sesame seed oil

1 tablespoon chopped fresh sweet basil

½ teaspoon red pepper flakes

Method of Preparation

1.      In a 4 quart sauce pan, bring water to a boil.  Add the noodles.  Boil for 4 minutes.  Strain.

2.      Add noodles to a mixing bowl, and then add remaining ingredients.  Toss.


Asian Asparagus Spears



1 pound pencil thin asparagus

2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

½ teaspoon sesame seed oil

1 teaspoon low sodium soy sauce

1 tablespoon dry roasted sesame seeds


Method of Preparation

1.      Trim asparagus to 5 inch length, discard bottoms.  Blanche asparagus.  Drain and place in ice bath until chilled.  Strain

2.      In a mixing bowl, add remaining ingredients, whisk; add asparagus and toss, completely coat spears. Cover and chill for half an hour.

3.      Drain marinade and discard. Sprinkle sesame seeds and toss.


Cajun Pecans


1/4 pound pecan halves

½ teaspoon granulated garlic

½ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper


Method of Preparation

1.      Over medium heat dry fry the pecan halves for about 2 minutes, do not burn. Remove from heat and add to a small mixing bowl.

2.      Sprinkle with garlic and cayenne. Toss and reserve.

Plating Instructions


4 sprigs of dill weed

Squeeze bottle of hoisin sauce

2 limes cut into wedges

5 inch long bamboo skewers

1.      Divide the Cajun Reduction, Gris Gris and MawMaw’s Fig Coulis separately between each of four dipping bowls.  Garnish Cajun Reduction Sauce with fresh dill stem.

2.      Arrange 9 asparagus in an equidistant outwardly pointing ray pattern from the center of the plate.  Choose a Chef’s spoon and 1/4 of the seasoned glass noodles, use chopsticks to swirl the glass noodles in the spoon.  Gently place the swirled nest of noodles on top of the center of the plate and on top of the asparagus ends. Pat down slightly.

3.      Gently remove the grilled leek rings from the top of the filet, reserve. Using two spatulas so as not to break up the filet, remove the salmon from on top of the green leek tops. Discard the leek tops. Trim the filet to expose the medium rare doneness of the salmon. Trim to a 6 - 7 ounce squared serving; arrange the salmon on top of the noodle nest.  Gently replace the roasted leek rings on top of the salmon.

4.      Squeeze 4 lines about 3 inches long of hoisin sauce between the asparagus rays. Place the dipping dishes on top of the hoisin sauce; this will act as a paste to hold the dipping dishes in place.

5.      Top with Cajun Pecans.

  1. Skewer the lime wedges and insert into the filet on a 45 degree bias.


Gris Gris is a powder that Voodoo witch doctors use for incantations. Most Cajuns have a home blend of dry seasonings on the table to add to their favorite dishes, this is a salute to home cooking and our culture.

A pirogue is a Cajun boat used for carrying goods and people down the bayou.

Before my ancestors were expelled from Acadia (Nova Scotia), they most certainly caught and cooked many Atlantic salmon.  To this day we cook it for many of our holiday meals.

The leeks are used for several purposes. The green bottoms protect the filet from burning on the grill and they give off a distinctive smoke flavor to the fish.  The white leek rings are placed on top of the filet. They also protect the fish from over cooking and are a great indicator as to the doneness of the fish.

 Materials Used

(1) BBQ pit with cover

(1 lb) Pecan Wood Chips

Aluminum Foil

Charcoal or gas (for the bbq pit)

(1) two inch, half hotel pan

(3) 1 Quart SS Mixing bowls

(2) Pair of Tongs

(2) Small Whisk

(2) Chef spoons

(2) Metal spatchulas

(2) 2 qt sauce pan

(1) Colander

(2) forks

(1) Set of chef knives

(1) Set of measuring spoons

(1) Cutting Board

(3) Hand towels

(1) 12 inch Teflon Frying pan

1 10-inch non-stick skillet

4 Presentation Plates

(12) dipping bowls or 2-inch ramekins
6 large silverware spoons (tasting spoons)
1 - 2 cup liquid measuring cups
2 cutting boards
1 box large latex gloves
1 oven with stovetop
Plastic wrap
Parchment paper

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Chef Emile L. Stieffel, Aurora Catering, Inc. email address: ChefEmile@CustomCatering.net
Copyright © 1995 - May, 2017 Aurora Catering, Inc. All rights reserved.
Revised: May 18, 2017.