Slow roasted salmon
Anyone ever done this? Cook's Illustrated has a recipe for baking a salmon side at 250 for an hour (wrapped in foil). I make fillets all the time, started on the stovetop and finished in the oven, but with an entire side that's not workable of course. I know I could roast the side in foil with herbs, lemon, etc at 425 or so for 15 or so minutes, but the slow method intrigues me. As I am cooking for a crowd I'm a bit hesitant to try a new method. Thoughts on slow vs. regular roasting a salmon side?
I do this all the time now, after trying it last year. It's really so easy, and moist and delicious if you keep an eye on it.
I usually do smaller pieces for myself but I've worked with sides when catering and it absolutely works.
One thing I like to do is season the salmon simply, and maybe add the zest of a lemon (Meyer if you have it) before roasting. This is also really nice over fig or grape leaves. Just lay the fish down right on the leaves and bake, uncovered. It imparts a lovely flavor, and looks so pretty.
As far as timing, just check it often. I like the inside to look almost raw, but once it rests a bit it is cooked through, yet still very moist.
I've done this many times and it's a great way to approximate the texture of poached salmon without all the, well, you know, poaching. The salmon cooks through in much less than an hour (as your recipe says) and it remains moist without being wrapped in anything. Here's the recipe I use:
1-1/2 lb. salmon fillet (or larger), in one piece
2 tbsp. olive oil or melted butter
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
Preheat the oven to 250o F.
Brush a baking pan (large enough to hold the fillet without scrunching it up) with some of the olive oil or melted butter. Place the salmon fillet on the baking pan, then brush with the remaining olive oil or melted butter. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper, and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.
Serve warm or chill and serve cold (or at room temperature). A sauce of some sort is nice with this because otherwise it's pretty plain.
Good to know, thanks. That's exactly what CI said--this approximates poaching without the hassle of poaching. I was planning on doing two or three different sauces/salsas served on the side so that people could have what they wanted--I agree it would be too plain without. My piece will be MUCH larger than 1.5 lbs, though--we're talking a whole side of King here.