I’m always on the lookout for easy, delectable recipes that are great for entertaining a crowd. This salmon fits into that category, actually, it rises to the top of that category.
It can be made in advance and is best served at room temperature, so there is no need to jump into the kitchen and start cooking right when your guests are arriving. By the time your guests show up at the door the salmon is already done, it’s happy, all the flavors are meshing together—just like you and your guests are (hopefully).
Last week, I was lucky enough to host the incredible Julie Robles for a Chef in My Kitchen cooking class. Julie has worked with Suzanne Goin for over fifteen years at Tavern, AOC and Lucques (more of Julie to come to the blog soon, promise!). This salmon was a standard on the menu at Lucques that I always loved and pretty much insisted that Julie teach us how to make it.
My plan is to make this dish for Easter. It’s the perfect addition to any buffet because it’s healthy, fresh, delicious and best served at room temperature. Julie taught us the secret to a custardy, moist salmon— place a baking dish filled with water in the lower rack of the oven below the cooking salmon. Be sure to use mild spring herbs like chervil, parsley and tarragon to keep from overwhelming the flavor of the salmon.
Slow Roasted Salmon and Cucumber Yogurt
From Suzanne Goin’s Sunday Suppers at Lucques
This makes enough for a crowd (12 people). If you have any leftover salmon it would work beautifully in a salad or tossed with a light pasta.
2 pounds wild salmon (1 piece), skin on, bones removed
2 teaspoons kosher salt
Fleur de sel
Freshly ground pepper
½ cup finely diced shallots
2 tablespoons minced chervil
2 tablespoons minced tarragon
¼ cup minced fresh parsley
2 tablespoons olive oil
Remove the salmon from the refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking, to bring it to room temperature.
Turn the oven to 250 and place a shallow pan of water on the bottom rack.
Finely grate the zest of the lemon until you have 1 teaspoon. Combine the lemon zest, shallots, chervil, tarragon, and parsley in a small bowl, and stir in 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
Place the salmon, skin side down, on a baking sheet, and season with 2 teaspoons kosher salt and some freshly ground pepper.
Smear about a third of the herb mixture on the fish, and turn it over. Slather the skin side of the fish with the remaining herb mixture, and season with the fleur de sel and a little more black pepper.
Place the salmon on a wire rack set on a baking sheet, or in a roasting pan. Bake the salmon about 25 minutes, until medium-rare to medium. The center will be slightly translucent. To check if the salmon is done, peek between the flakes. If it doesn’t separate into flakes, it’s not ready yet.
While your salmon is in the oven, make the cucumber yogurt.
3/4 cup Greek yogurt (full or low fat)
2 small Persian cucumbers, peeled and finely chopped
1 small clove of garlic, finely chopped
2 tsp. lemon juice
Zest of half a lemon
1/8 tsp. Cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients together. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
When ready to serve, pull apart chunks of salmon and top with a dollop of the cucumber yogurt.