Perfectly Cooked Salmon
Perfectly Cooked Salmon can be a tough task for a lot of cooks. Even really good cooks. After today’s lesson, we hope that will never be the case again. The cook time with fish is very sensitive. There isn’t a magic amount of time that works every time. No worries! Here’s what I have to say about that.
Chef Pennington’s Tips to Perfectly Cooked Salmon
- Cook skin side down 80% of the time
- Personal sized filets cook in 4 to 6 minutes ( Closer to 5 minutes )
- When Baking – 375 degrees is very successful temperature. Offers enough temperature to cook the fish through gently. When you’re confident, 400 to 425 degrees can offer a different finished texture. I still find 375 the sweet spot. With fish, something that can get overcooked within a minute, the lower temperature gives you more room, larger window before removing from the oven.
- Sauteing/Stove Top Cooking Method – Use medium heat, start with an oil like olive oil or peanut oil. Start skin side down. Do not turn over till you can see the fish changing colors at the base of the skin. You’ll see it start turning a gray color. Let the color rise up the side of the fish a little before turning. About 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch ( One and a half to two minutes). Flip and cook on the other side for about one minute then sear both fish sides of the fish.
- Always remove the fish before it’s done. You must consider “Carry Over Cooking Heat/Time) The fish will continue to cook once removed from the elements/heat. This is the part that takes practice. Follow this rule and you will be faring on the side of not overcooking your fish.
- Always inspect your fish. Look for small pin bones missed by your fishmonger/butcher/person that cleaned the fish. Everyone makes mistakes. You do not want small bones going down your windpipe. The good news is you can easily see them and feel them. Use small tweezers for removal.
- Inspecting the fish part two: If you have a whole fish, look into the fishes eyes. They should be bright and clear. Not muggy or cloudy. This is the single best way to judge the freshness. Next is smell, the fish could smell like the ocean, not fishy fish. Never. Lastly is touch. You should be able to press down on the fish and the flesh spring back into shape. Anyone of these three inspection categories gets a failing grade you do not what to eat the fish.
Removing Salmon Skin for Perfectly Cooked Salmon
Inspect Salmon for which side you can place your knife under the skin. You may need to make a small cut to get started.
Next, lay the Salmon flat and place the knife between the skin and the fish.
While holding the skin in place slide the knife back and forth cutting the skin away from the Salmon.
Best Salmon Recipe Ideas
- Mix Honey Mustard & Soy Sauce together. 1/4 cup of Soy Sauce to 1 tbsp of Honey Mustard
- If Using Teriyaki Sauce – Store bought – salt the fish first then paint the teriyaki on with a brush
- If Using Hoisin Sauce – Store bought – salt the fish first then paint the Hoisin Sauce on with a brush – Highly suggest trying this.
- Saute in butter, lemon juice and sliced garlic ( be sure to control the temperature, lower temp so the garlic doesn’t burn)
- Butter, Chervil, Parsley or Dill are flavors around the world.