Sheet Pan

Garlic & Saffron Roasted Salmon

November  9, 2015
2 Ratings
Photo by Alexandra V. Jones
  • Serves 6
Author Notes

My birthday is New Year’s Eve, and every year we would have my party at my mom’s restaurant. While she was cooking prime rib for 100, she would make me whatever I wanted—and I always picked fish. She would liberally season usually halibut and roast it quick. This recipe is a homage to this birthday tradition. —Alexandra V. Jones

Test Kitchen Notes

This recipe is good but some of the favors get lost with the roasting. I recommend cutting the mirin or white wine down to 2 tablespoons so as not to water down the oil mix too much. To reap as much flavor and color from the saffron, out a pinch of saffron into a mortar and pestle with a pinch of sugar. I would roast the salmon at 450 for about 10-12 min with only salt and pepper, adding the garlic saffron mix with the herbs after cooking.
Rachel Stelmach

What You'll Need
  • 1 skin-on whole salmon filet
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup mirin or dry white wine
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • Salt and pepper to taste (Jacobson sea salt is the best)
  • 1 handful fresh parsley and chives or other fresh herbs (basil and sage are great, too)
  1. Preheat oven to 450° F. In a small saucepan, place olive oil, butter, garlic, and red pepper flakes over medium-low heat, heat until garlic is fragrant, then add mirin. Remove from heat, then add saffron.
  2. Grease a sheet pan with cooking spray or oil, then place the filet skin down. Season with salt and pepper, and pour the garlic mixture over the fish.
  3. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes. Roughly chop the herbs. Sprinkle the cooked salmon with herbs, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Eat. Good for a group or a potluck.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Alexandra V. Jones
    Alexandra V. Jones
  • VPC
  • drewscarter
  • X
Chef de cuisine @Shelburne hotel Seaview, WA

6 Reviews

VPC June 11, 2023
Loved this recipe! Bought wild salmon for the first time and it was delicious.
drewscarter July 11, 2022
I ran into this recipe while looking for something with saffron and salmon. My entire family loves it--including the kids at 4 and 7! My only change is to reduce the wine by half to better suit a child's palate. This has been part of regular rotation for a couple months now, and I registered just to let Alexandra (and anyone else) know just how great the recipe is.
Alexandra V. December 4, 2015
Thanks for the cp! I must disagree with the head note, as the roasting of the "watered down oil mixture" is essential to the process of reducing the wine for flavor and aroma and to cut any sharpness left in the garlic. If it seemed under seasoned might I suggest thoroughly salting? Also I would never want to overpower a beautiful, wild, coho, just accent it's natural flavor, never needed to add anything to my already bright and pungent saffron. Thanks for testing it and happy cooking!
X April 19, 2018
I prepared this salmon recipe last evening to Ms. Jones specifications and it was perfect. My husband procured a particularly beautiful piece of Pacific salmon, so it would be hard to go too wrong. I followed her recipe exactly; the flavors were balanced and there was no possibility of under-seasoning. (I did salt and pepper the salmon as she recommended in her comment.) Many salmon recipes are a litany of ginger, garlic, and some kind of heavy sweetener which can be a bit boring. Ginger can overpower the delicate flavour of fresh salmon. In Ms. Jones recipe, the mirin provides a very subtle sweetness. The saffron shines above the garlic. (I did use a fresh packet of saffron which was very aromatic.) This is one of the best and most interesting recipes I have prepared lately. I think Ms. Jones is a culinary talent to be watched.
Alexandra V. April 20, 2018
Wow! Thank you for taking the time out to say something kind! A refreshing change from the usual keyboard warriors spreading negativity. Community still does exist! Thanks for giving me hope, I am elated that I could share something that you enjoyed.
X May 2, 2018
You're so welcome!