Don’t touch your salmon to get the crispiest skin
How to Boil Water
With so many of you having to stay home and cook for the first time — ever or more than you have in a long time — we get that it can be overwhelming to have to cook all your meals from scratch. So we’re here to get you started.
Each day we’re going to post a new skill here and go in detail about how to do it — a resource for cooking basics so you can get food on the table and get through this.
Lesson 23: Crispy-skin salmon
Fish with shatteringly crisp skin is a perfect food. But it’s not a food that sits around well, so instead of ordering it for takeout, make it yourself at home. You have my word: No smoke alarms will go off in the process.
The process is extraordinarily simple: You put the fillets skin side down in a medium-hot skillet and never touch them again until you spoon hot, nutty, caramelized bits of browned butter over the flesh to flavor it.
The fish needs to rest a few minutes, which is ample time to throw together an easy pantry-staple vinaigrette to accompany it. I toast chile flakes in a skillet to wake them up, then steep them in vinegar (any kind works) while the fish cooks. Once the fish is resting, I strain out the flakes to keep all their aromatic warmth but none of their wincing sting. In go chopped shallots, onions, scallions — whatever you’ve got in that family — and garlic, if you like, along with that browned butter you cooked the fish in.
I pour the vinaigrette around the fillets on the plate so it flavors the fish while also keeping that skin crisp — a no-contact flavor delivery, if you will.
Eat your way across L.A.
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