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Broiled Salmon with Cilantro Sauce


Broiled king salmon with cilantro sauce

Broiled king salmon with cilantro sauce

Holly A. Heyser
If you have top-quality salmon, don't mess with it. With this recipe, you broil your salmon simply with salt and olive oil, then serve it with a Spanish-style cilantro-green pepper sauce that's common in the Canary Islands; if you don't like cilantro the sauce works fine with parsley. The sauce is easier to make than it looks, and the orange Brandywine tomatoes on the side are simply diced and sprinkled with salt. This recipe serves 4 as a main course.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes


  • 1 1/2 lb skinless salmon fillets
  • Salt
  • Olive oil to coat the fish
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro or parsley leaves
  • 1 finely chopped medium green pepper, ancho or poblano if possible
  • 3 finely chopped garlic cloves
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. cumin
  • 2 T. sherry or white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


To make the sauce, combine the garlic, salt, cumin, chopped herbs and green pepper in a food processor and buzz well to combine. Scrape down the sides and add the vinegar, then buzz it again for about 30 seconds.

Scrape the sides down one more time, then turn the processor on its lowest setting. Add the 1/2 cup olive oil in a slow stream, and when it is all in the processor, turn the machine up to high and buzz for 2 minutes. You're done.

Turn on the broiler.

Wash and pat the salmon fillets dry. Coat them in olive oil and sprinkle them with salt. Set aside for 10 minutes.

Place the salmon down on a well greased broiler pan and cook for about 10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillet. My broiler puts the fish about 8 inches away from the flame and I broiled thin, tail-end salmon fillets for 10 minutes. Thicker fillets will need more time, broilers that place the meat closer to the flame will need less time.

You do not want the salmon to char on top, and you do not want to flip the salmon unless it is very thick. The fish should just begin to color on top when it's done.

To serve, pour some sauce on the plate and top with the salmon. You can pour more sauce over the salmon if you'd like. Simple chopped beefsteak tomatoes are an excellent summer accompaniment, as are small roasted potatoes. Both go well with the cilantro sauce.

In winter, I'd go with the potatoes and caramelized onions.

As for drinks, I'd go with a malty beer or, in summertime, a rose wine from Spain, southern France or California. In winter I'd switch to a buttery Chardonnay or another full-bodied white wine.

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