Chad’s Smoked Salmon Dill Dip

Chad’s thinking of a New Year’s grab & go party idea: his Smoked Salmon Dill Dip, sold in the meat department.

When you meet Chad, who works in our meat department, be ready to laugh until you cry because this guy is beyond entertaining and hilarious. He perhaps missed his calling as a stand-up comic because his witty, amusing stories could brighten even the dreariest of days. To say that his humor and flair for amusement may have gotten him into a bit of trouble as a young country boy growing up on a farm, perhaps is an understatement. However, his now 92-year-old Grandma was always there to keep this country boy in line. Chad recalled fond memories of Grandma going around the kitchen with a spoon in her hand saying, “Get to work or get out of the kitchen!” When Grandma spoke, one was sure to listen and Chad did get to work, learning skills from her that few young children get the chance to experience including cooking, canning, and gardening. In addition, his Grandpa taught him how to smoke meats such as pork chops, chicken quarters and fish using an old refrigerator he converted into a smoker.

These are all skills that Chad actively cultivated over the years. Today Chad continues to smoke his own meats using a vertical smoker at his home, he cans his own pickles and salsa, ferments apples, makes fruit leather using his dehydrator, in addition to cooking and gardening.

His love for fishing and smoking his own fish inspired him to come up with his Smoked Salmon Dill Dip recipe for the meat department, which makes a great appetizer for any party. The dip’s ingredients include chunks of smoked salmon from Alaska Wild Fish Company, processed in Cushing, Minnesota, dried onions, dill, lemon juice, mayonnaise and sour cream. Chad says it is a basic recipe but it tastes awesome. He likes to use a heavier smoked salmon, cut into chunks, to enhance and bring out the flavor.

When Chad looks back at his childhood and what he learned from his Grandma, what touches him most is how sincere and loving she is in addition to being such a hard worker. Her work ethic, perseverance,  disciplined nature and enduring, lively spirit are ingrained from surviving one of the most horrific experiences in world history. Hitler’s army captured both Chad’s Grandma and Grandpa and placed her in a concentration camp, while only keeping his Grandpa alive because he knew four languages. To this day, his Grandma refuses to talk about the experience and what she’s seen as the pain and hurt run deep.

Yet despite what she’s been through, to this day his Grandma is as spry and spunky as ever, keeping her family and loved ones close as she and Chad’s Grandpa raised eight kids on their farm. Chad feels this close bond with his Grandma too, commenting on how she pretty much raised him. This bond and the care enrooted in it, carry over in the detailed, thoughtful manner Chad embarks upon as he utilizes the skills she taught him. Perhaps over time Chad’s Grandma tamed his wild ways a bit, but as they say, you can take the boy out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the boy. That’s okay with us because Chad’s humor and light-hearted personality definitely make for a fun working and shopping experience!

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