Slim Palate's Pistachio-Crusted Salmon by Michelle Tam

Know what you can get with just six ingredients and twenty minutes? A seriously sophisticated supper.

I wish I could take credit for this elegant and deceptively simple salmon dish, but I actually found it in my pal Joshua Weissman’s The Slim Palate Paleo Cookbook. At the ripe old age of 18 (yep—Josh wrote his cookbook before graduating from high school), he’s figured out that no one needs a bunch of fussy ingredients or fancy techniques to create flavorful, crowd-pleasing dishes.

Slim Palate's Pistachio-Crusted Salmon by Michelle Tam

Having tried Josh’s Pistachio-Crusted Salmon, I’ve decided to add it to the regular dinner rotation at our house because:

  1. I want my family to eat more fish.
  2. My kids love salmon, I know I won’t hear any complaints at the dinner table.
  3. always have the other ingredients for this recipe on hand—except for the salmon.

Thankfully, I can order sustainable seafood from Siren Fish Co. (via Good Eggs)—including some fantastic wild king salmon. I tweaked Josh’s recipe slightly to accommodate my one-pound fillet, which I divided into three portions. But don’t worry: the magical flavors and textures of this dish are all Josh.

Here’s what to gather to feed 3 people (or—in our case—2 adults and 2 pint-sized boys):

  • 1 (1-pound) wild king salmon fillet, skin on and pin bones removed
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly-ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard (I actually used the whole grain variety)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives or scallions
  • ½ cup shelled salted and dry roasted pistachios, crushed

Here’s what you do:

Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a baking tray with parchment paper. (I normally use my super-awesome counter-top toaster oven instead ’cause it doesn’t raise the temperature of the whole house.)

Pat the fish dry with a paper towel and divide the fillet into three uniform portions. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the skin, and lay it skin-side down on the parchment-lined baking tray.

Combine the mustard and chives in a small bowl…

Slim Palate's Pistachio-Crusted Salmon by Michelle Tam

…and spread one-third of the mixture evenly on each piece of fish.

Next, sprinkle the crushed nuts on top of the mustardy salmon and pat ’em down gently  to make sure they stick.

Slim Palate's Pistachio-Crusted Salmon by Michelle Tam

Place the tray in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the salmon is cooked through to your desired doneness. If you’re cooking a whole 1-pound filet, you may need to increase the baking time to 15 minutes.

Slim Palate's Pistachio-Crusted Salmon by Michelle Tam

Take the salmon out of the oven and let the fillets rest for a few minutes. In the meantime, reheat some leftover roasted vegetables and dice up a basket of cherry tomatoes.

That’s it!

Slim Palate's Pistachio-Crusted Salmon by Michelle Tam

I love tricking my family into thinking that I slaved over dinner. Martyrdom at its finest!

Slim Palate's Pistachio-Crusted Salmon by Michelle Tam

If you don’t have Josh’s cookbook, what are you waiting for?

Looking for more recipes? Head on over to my Recipe Index! You’ll also find exclusive recipes on my iPad® app, and in my New York Times bestselling cookbook, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel 2013).

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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