Salmon pasta is one of our family favorites. It combines simple ingredients and techniques, yet the dish feels sophisticated and complex. The anchovies lend depth, and the lemon perfumes and brightens the dish. This recipe is adapted from my lovely sister-in-law, Simona. She grew up in Rome and cooked in restaurants in the Italian mountains. Simona lives in the States now and she's taught me so much about great food and home cooking. —mariaraynal
short, sturdy pasta (I like farfalle, penne or fusilli)
fillet of salmon
freshly cracked black pepper, sea salt and crushed red pepper, to taste
Put a pot of water over high heat on the stovetop for pasta. When water come to boil, add a handful of salt and cook pasta for about 8 minutes, or until al dente. Drain and save pasta water.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place salmon fillet on lined baking tray and season well with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Drizzle lightly with olive oil. Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until salmon flakes easily with fork.
In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium and add shallots, stirring occasionally, until translucent. Add garlic and anchovies and continue to stir. Season with black pepper, crushed red pepper, and, if desired, salt.
When shallots and garlic are soft and lightly caramelized, add drained, cooked pasta to the skillet and toss with shallot mixture until well combined. Deglaze with wine and reduce for several minutes.
Remove salmon from oven and flake into large pieces. Place in skillet and stir gently. If needed, add pasta water and check seasoning. Zest lemon over the pasta and serve.
I'm a self-trained home cook and freelance food writer who enjoys cooking and eating seasonally and locally whenever possible. When I travel, visiting the farmers' markets, local groceries and specialty food shops is as important as the shopping, museums and restaurants. I love to immerse myself in cookbooks, then go into the kitchen and experiment; and writing about food and the chefs who cook it is my latest pursuit. By day, I'm an executive speechwriter and event planner.