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Kristin Porter

Better Cook: How To Cook Salmon

When I think of the Midwest in terms of food, I think of fresh sweet corn, bustling farmers’ markets, and some of the best beef and pork in the country. What I don’t think of, is seafood.

See, we’re landlocked. Rocking the ‘no coast’, if you will, and the most exotic seafood I dined on growing up here in Iowa was shrimp and imitation crab sticks. Luckily over the past 10 years or so, many varieties of fresh and reasonably priced fish have become readily available at the grocery store, making it easy to incorporate fish and seafood into my weekly menu.

Salmon in particular has become one of my favorites over the past couple of years, not only for it’s mild taste and versatility, but also for it’s high concentration of Omega 3 fatty acids, which have benefits ranging from boosting heart health, to improving skin tone.

Despite its healthy benefits I think many people, not just here in the Midwest, are unsure of the best way to cook salmon. I promise, it’s actually very easy. I’ll show you how!

First select your salmon. I usually choose 4oz filets of wild-caught sockeye or Atlantic salmon, which taste “salmony” but aren’t too strongly flavored. Brush both the skin and flesh side with extra virgin olive oil, then season liberally with salt and pepper. Don’t be scared by the salmon skin, by the way. I’ll show you an incredibly easy way to remove it in a bit!

Place the salmon skin-side down in a dry skillet over medium-high heat.

Cook the salmon until you can start to see it changing color up the side.

Flip the salmon then let it cook for about 1/2 the time it cooked on the first side.

While the salmon is cooking on the second side, peel back the skin, which is now crisp and should come off in one strip, which you an immediately toss.

See? Easy!

At this point I like to add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, or add a glaze like this Maple-Bourbon Glaze I spooned onto the salmon after removing the skin. (Made sans bourbon, as the husband got thirsty…)

Flip the salmon over one last time, then slide it onto a plate.

Serve with fresh veggies, and a light starch like rice, and dig in!

Easy, flaky, fuss-free salmon, every time. Let me know in the comments section if you have any other questions!