Cedar Plank Braided Salmon With Apple Butter Sauce

READY IN: 1hr 30mins
SERVES: 10-12




  • To prepare Apple Butter Sauce: blend the mayo, butter and tarragon in a bowl and chill until serving time. Makes 2 cups Apple Butter Sauce.
  • Fillet the salmon, removing all the bones.
  • Remove the skin and pin bones.
  • Oil the cedar planks and place the salmon on it.
  • Slice through the salmon, from the wide end, lengthwise, to about 2 inches from the tail end.
  • Repeat this motion to cut a total of seven strips that are each about 1/2" to 3/4" wide.
  • Keep the tail end intact.
  • Where the fish is intact at tail end, strips will be narrower.
  • Measure out half of the maple syrup and reserve.
  • Combine remaining maple syrup with whiskey, or liqueur.
  • Brush whiskey mixture all over salmon strips to generously coat.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • To braid: Mentally label the strips starting from the left as numbers 1 through 7.
  • Starting with strip number 4 lift it over strips 1 through 3, so that it is now on the outside left-hand side.
  • Next, take strip number 3 and lift it over strips 5 through 7 (to the right side).
  • Now, start again, renumbering the strips from 1 through 7.
  • Again, lift (the new) strip number 4 to the far left and (the new) strip number 3 to the right.
  • Continue in this manner until you have braided the whole length of fish.
  • Repeat braiding steps for second fillet.
  • Pat the braided fish into one compact length.
  • Either skewer the loose ends together or simply press together to keep in place.
  • At this point, the planked, braided salmon can be set on a backing sheet, covered and chilled overnight.
  • To finish the salmon: pour the maple butter and reserved syrup generously over the salmon; use a pastry brush to force the liquid into nooks and crannies.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Preheat BBQ to medium heat, or oven to 350°F.
  • To Barbeque the Salmon: Place the plank on a grill, over medium heat, on the upper rack, if your bbq has one.
  • Close lid (or cover salmon with foil roasting pan).
  • Cook for 20 to 25 minutes, or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork and internal temp for the fish reaches 120°F.
  • Alternatively: Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • To roast the salmon in the oven, place the plank on a foil lined, rimmed baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes.
  • Remove plank and salmon from heat.
  • Dust salmon liberally with maple sugar.
  • Salmon may be served hot or cold right from the plank.
  • Garnish with fresh herbs if using.
  • Serve with chilled Apple Butter Sauce.