Salmon is the fish that people say tastes the least “fishy”, and that’s just one reason why it’s enormously popular. It's also low in calories and replete with the protein, niacin, B12, and Omega-3 fatty acids that we need in our diets to stay healthy.
So you want to know how to broil salmon—which essentially means how much time it takes. Perhaps you have your own friends coming over for dinner and you’d like to feed them with filets from this magnificent and tenacious fish that can navigate the salty ocean depths and freshwater raging rivers alike.
So let’s answer that question first and foremost in its most basic form. Unlike the process of baking a salmon, whereby people swear by temperatures and times that vary from recipe to recipe, broilers are all essentially the same temperature. So some universal cooking rules apply, although just like art in other forms, the culinary arts are always subject to personal preference too. Use a broiling pan if you have one or line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil if you don’t.
How Much Time Do You Leave It Under the Broiler?
Let’s start with the goal in mind, which is seeing the meat of that salmon filet looking opaque after it has been cooked right. By opaque, we mean the fish is no longer clear, it's dull instead of shiny, and no light can pass through it. The meat of the fish should be flaky when you test the thickest portion of the filet with a knife and fork.
Broil it for ten minutes for every inch of thickness.
That’s the rule of thumb for baking, broiling and poaching—although just like steaks, people have their preferences in terms of rare, medium rare, and well-done.
Starting the Broil
That oven is big; you can’t just stick the salmon anywhere in there.
First, you’ve got to reposition the tray so that the salmon is approximately four to five inches from the heat. Broiling steaks that are thinner than an inch will only take between five and seven minutes. If the filet is over an inch and a half, it will need to be turned and broiled for another six minutes on that side.
That Salmon Journeyed Thousands of Miles for You, Don’t Let It Broil Alone
Even though salmon is good enough to eat on its own, there’s a world of herbs and spices you can add to really make it stand out. Experiment! The old stand-bys are fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme, dill or parsley—and you can use most anything from your stockpile of dried seasonings as well.
Mixing those herbs with butter or olive oil works well. Lemon, ginger root, onions, soy sauce, and the whole cavalcade of marinades are also items you might find very delicious to broil your fish in.
Good luck—as good as salmon is for your body and mind, why not make it a regular appearance in your cooking?