I promised you all a healthy post, so here it is: fresh salmon grilled over lemon and herbs with a light mustard crust. It’s one of my favorite recipes: easy, healthy, and very flavorful. The lemons underneath the fish steam it and flavor it with the herbs sandwiched between them, and the mustard browns into a nice crust with bits of herbs in it.
Normally I serve this with a side of long grain rice and whatever vegetable is on hand, but it’s equally fabulous over a spinach salad. Toss in some toasted almonds, a soft goat cheese, and maybe some sliced red onions… yum!
First, preheat your oven to 400. The recipe calls for a grill on medium high, but when it’s raining outside, sometimes it’s nice just to use the oven. Then we need to remove the skin. There’s a tip at the end of the recipe for removing it, which has never worked for me. I just sort of peel it off, slicing with a fillet knife as needed if the skin tears or starts to take actual meat with it. Then we choose our herbs (I went with thyme, tarragon, and oregano), take a few of each type, and dice up enough to make two tablespoons. Next, slice two lemons into thin slices.
Take two pieces of foil long enough to easily lay your salmon on, the recipe calls for 9 inches, and put the lemon slices in two rows on it. Then top with 20-30 sprigs of your chosen herbs.
Then take 2 teaspoons of salt and smash it together with two garlic cloves. The recipe calls for one, but when is a single lonely garlic clove EVER enough? I ended up having to dice it all up a bit after some smashing, to get the large pieces a little smaller.
Next,mix the garlic and salt with the chopped herbs and a tablespoon of dijon mustard. Coat the salmon on both sides and place it on the herb sprigs and lemon.
Slide the foil ‘tray’ into the preheated oven, and bake for 20 minutes, or until the salmon is opaque in the center. Then carefully remove the foil with oven mitts, it will be hot! Cut the salmon into portions if you’re forced to share, garnish with extra lemon wedges, and enjoy!
Grilled Salmon with Mustard and Herbs
2 lemons, thinly sliced, plus 1 lemon cut into wedges for garnish
20-30 sprigs mixed fresh herbs, plus 2 tablespoons chopped, divided
1 clove garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 pound center-cut salmon, skinned (see Tip)
Preheat grill to medium-high.
Lay two 9-inch pieces of heavy-duty foil on top of each other and place on a rimless baking sheet. Arrange lemon slices in two layers in the center of the foil. Spread herb sprigs over the lemons. With the side of a chef’s knife, mash garlic with salt to form a paste. Transfer to a small dish and stir in mustard and the remaining 2 tablespoons chopped herbs. Spread the mixture over both sides of the salmon. Place the salmon on the herb sprigs.
Slide the foil and salmon off the baking sheet onto the grill without disturbing the salmon-lemon stack. Cover the grill; cook until the salmon is opaque in the center, 18 to 24 minutes. Wearing oven mitts, carefully transfer foil and salmon back onto the baking sheet. Cut the salmon into 4 portions and serve with lemon wedges (discard herb sprigs and lemon slices).
TIPS & NOTES
Tip: How to skin a salmon fillet: Place skin-side down. Starting at the tail end, slip a long knife between the fish flesh and the skin, holding down firmly with your other hand. Gently push the blade along at a 30° angle, separating the fillet from the skin without cutting through either.