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Planked Salmon With Dirty Vegetables.

My wife was away tonight, so I didn't think I'd be able to do dinner on the barbecue, what with the kids' dinner, bath, bedtime and lunch boxes etc. Well, I was mistaken and testament to the abilities of the chimney starter and the gas starter on the Weber to get the coals going and cook almost the same way as you would in your kitchen. Charcoal in chimney starter, gas on, flame for 5 minutes then leave in the chimney for 20 mins for the coals to heat up.

In this 20 mins I grabbed a salmon fillet and some vegetables I had in the fridge whilst putting a beech wood plank in some water to soak. (This took about 4mins, so the rest of the 16 mins was spent adding pesto to the 3 year old's pasta dinner, grating some cheese for him, adding some olives and serving).

After the coals were going well I tipped them into the barbecue and threw on the vegetables. The aubergine takes the longest to cook, so that went on first, followed by the green pepper and finally the spring onions. The salmon was planked, seasoned with salt and pepper and placed on top of the coals. WARNING: The thin 'wood' planks are a bit more like paper than the thicker planks and ideally meant for wrapping and placing on the grill, NOT dirty style on the coals...I learnt this lesson so you don't have to!! However, if you do end up doing this, don't panic, I just took the 'paper plank' off the coals to one side and surrounded it with coals which cooked it really nicely.

One of the best parts about this cook was that the only seasoning was salt and pepper on the salmon before cooking, and some olive oil and mixed herbs on the aubergine after it was cooked...that's it..simplicity at its finest.

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