Throughout the years, Eli Haddix proved to be one of Evansville Living’s favorite foodies. His passion for food extended from the restaurant kitchens where he worked to the homecooked meals he created for friends, and he graced many pages in Evansville Living sharing his favorite recipes with readers.
Eli passed away May 13 after a battle with cholangiocarcinoma, commonly known as bile duct cancer. But like his love for food, Eli’s legacy can’t be snuffed out. With grilling season now in full force, the team at Evansville Living wants to share two of our favorite summertime recipes from Eli. He knew how to mix ingredients in lively ways, and these recipes — expertly matching fresh produce with adventurous seasoning — perfectly set the table for a summer feast that any chef can master. Here’s to Eli!
Grilled Salmon with Pineapple Salsa
• Salmon filets (skin-on) 7-10 oz. each
• 1 ripe pineapple (2-3 days after purchasing should be perfect)
• 1 jalapeño pepper
• 1/2 red pepper
• 1/2 red onion, peeled
• 1 bunch cilantro, leaves only
• Juice from one lime
The salsa can be made ahead of time, as it gets better after it sits for a day or so. Begin by removing the seeds and stem from the jalapeño and red pepper. Slice the skin from your pineapple, and carefully slice around the core. If included, the core brings a very tough texture and bitter flavor to the salsa. Mince all vegetables, then toss together in a large bowl with salt, pepper, and lime juice. The majority of this should be pineapple, but feel free to adjust proportions to your liking.
When you’re ready to grill, get your grates nice and hot (at least 425 degrees). Generously season your salmon with garlic powder, salt, pepper, and a bit of ancho chili powder. Rub the seasoning in with a bit of olive oil, and place on the grill, skin side down. Once you see a bit of color form above the skin, it’s time to flip. When you flip, don’t worry about the skin anymore; it should come right off. Grilling 3-5 minutes per side depending on the thickness of your filets will give you perfectly cooked salmon in less than 10 minutes. Serve topped with one to two spoonfuls of pineapple salsa.
Pancetta Peach Pasta
• 1/2 pound pancetta 1/4 inch thick, cubed
• 1 pound whole-wheat pasta
• 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 3 tablespoons raw honey
• 1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
• 1/3 red onion, minced
• 4 ounces baby spinach
• 6 medium peaches, cut into wedges
• 1 bunch cilantro
Heat a medium skillet, preheat the grill, and boil water for pasta. (Add about a tablespoon of salt to the pasta water.) Cook pasta according to package directions. While the pasta cooks, place the cubed pancetta into the skillet and begin to render the fat. Once the pancetta begins to crisp, add olive oil, bell pepper, and onion. Simmer over low heat for five to seven minutes, stirring occasionally.
Brush the peach wedges with melted butter and grill three minutes per side until firm and warm. Drain the pasta and toss it in the skillet after turning off the heat, gently folding in spinach and cilantro. Drizzle with honey and lightly sprinkle some Parmesan cheese over pasta. Serve topped with grilled peaches.