How to cook crispy-skin salmon like a chef
When you order salmon in a restaurant, the skin is super-crisp and the salmon is just pink inside. Here's how to do it at home.
When you order salmon in a restaurant, the skin is super-crisp and the salmon is just pink inside. Then you do it at home, and the skin is soft and soggy and the salmon is under-cooked or over-cooked. So here's what you need to know to pan-fry salmon like a chef.
1. Keep the skin on – it protects the fish from over-cooking.
2. Cook the fish skin-side down in the pan for 90 per cent of the cooking time.
3. Press the fish into the pan with an egg flipper or saucepan lid for maximum crispness.
2 x 180 g fillets fresh salmon or ocean trout, skin-on
2 tsp vegetable oil
Sea salt and pepper
Pat the fish dry with paper towel. Heat a good-sized frying pan over medium heat, add the vegetable oil, and when hot, place the fish skin-side down in the pan.
Use an egg flipper or a flat saucepan lid to press the salmon firmly down into the pan to stop it from curling up. You want the skin to have 100 per cent contact with the heat of the pan so that it will crisp.
The sides of the fillet will change colour from orange to pink as it cooks, so use this as your timer. When the colour change reaches three-quarters up the side of the fish - about two to three minutes - turn and cook for another 30 seconds. Check that it is cooked how you like by cutting into the bottom, then serve skin-side up on a bed of asparagus and peas, wilted spinach, kale chips or mash.
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