Parmesan Crusted Salmon
Dinner tonight…and I updated the recipe with a few helpful details…
A version of this recipe was the first seafood dish I ever served to company when I was newly married 18 or so years ago! I have given this recipe away countless times since and my mother-in-law just mentioned that she cooked it for guests to rave reviews.
In the original recipe, I used all mayonnaise. Over the years, however, I have developed an affinity for cutting mayonnaise in recipes with Greek yogurt. The substitution can be made in proportions that maintain the flavor of a recipe while improving the heath profile by decreasing fat and increasing protein, calcium and other nutrients.
I am often asked if Greek yogurt can be substituted for all the mayonnaise so, sometimes, I try. Generally speaking, a 50-50 mix is safe. In the case of this salmon recipe, I made it with all Greek yogurt and increased the Parmesan by one tablespoon. The flavor was tangier than the version with mayonnaise and did not brown quite as much, but I liked it, as did my family.
Of all versions of this recipe I have concocted over the years, however, my favorite way in the recipe which follows. It is creamy and just a bit tangy and so completely easy to prepare. This dish is easy enough for a quick weeknight meal and altogether fancy enough for entertaining. The Parmesan mixture can even be made ahead and spread on the fish just before baking.
Combine the Parmesan mixture ahead of time to make quick work of dinner. The recipe can easily be multiplied to feed a crowd.
- 4 6-ounce (1 1/2 pounds) salmon fillets (may substitute cod or other flaky white fish)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt (fat free or 2% work well)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives (can substitute finely chopped green onion)
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- In a small bowl, stir together the yogurt, mayonnaise, Parmesan, chives, Worcestershire sauce, and pepper.
- If the salmon is skinned, place the fillets on a lightly greased baking sheet. If not, see the note below.
- Spread mixture evenly over top of the salmon fillets.
- Bake for approximately 10 minutes or until the salmon is just cooked through. I bake on the top rack which helps to brown the Parmesan mixture a bit. The mayonnaise in the topping is what will allow for the browning. If the fillets are thin, check 2-3 minutes early. Conversely, if your fillets are thick, they may require an extra minute or two. (Don’t hesitate to cut into the thickest part and take a peek. This is the best way to avoid overcooking if you aren’t sure.)
Here is an easy way to remove the skin if you purchase the salmon that way: Cover your baking sheet with foil and do not grease. Place the salmon, skin-side down, on the foil-lined sheet and cook as directed. When cooked, simply run your spatula between the fish and the skin. The skin will stick to the foil and you can scoop the cooked filet right off. Makes for quick clean-up of the tray, too!