I’ve been eying a cast iron skillet for a while, but was a bit intimidated by how different the cooking process and care is from my typical non-stick equipment. After finally purchasing one, I immediately broke a cardinal rule of cast iron: I left it in the sink to soak. This Macheesmo blog post was critical in helping me restore my skillet to its original glory. It looks as good as new, and I’m less worried about making mistakes now! So, I decided to try a dish I’ve had trouble with in the past – cast iron grilled salmon.
Cast iron can be a bit less forgiving than non-stick, so do a little research about your dish before you dive in. I was pleasantly surprised at how well this turned out! Definitely use the same pan to cook the corn sauté and then the salmon – it adds a very nice bacon-y flavor to the fish, plus reduces clean-up time.
By Stephanie McBride
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yield: Serves 4
- 1 lb baby red potatoes, quartered
- 1 ½ tbsp. olive oil
- ½ tsp each of salt, pepper, and a dried herb (I used thyme, but rosemary would be nice too)
- Heat oven to 425° and line a baking sheet with tin foil.
- Toss all ingredients in foil-lined pan.
- Bake potatoes for 25 minutes or until crispy, tossing 1-2 times throughout. Cook corn sauté and salmon while potatoes bake.
Salmon and Corn Saute
- 3 slices bacon, chopped
- 1/3 red onion, diced
- 2 tbsp. dry white wine
- 1 ½ tsp sherry
- 1 (10-oz) package frozen corn kernels
- ½ tsp each salt and pepper, divided
- 1 ½ tbsp. chives, diced
- 1 tbsp canola oil
- 1 ¼ lb center-cut salmon fillet
- Heat cast iron skillet over medium heat. Cook bacon 6 minutes or until crispy, stirring occasionally. Add red onion and sauté 2 minutes. Add wine and scrape the pan so everything is loosened (this is also a good time to pour yourself some wine). Add sherry, corn, ¼ tsp each salt and pepper to skillet. Stir and let cook for 5 minutes.
- While corn cooks, season salmon with remaining ¼ tsp salt and pepper. Pour corn sauté into a bowl when it’s done, and cover with foil. Replace skillet on burner. There should be some oil remaining on the pan from the bacon – this is a good thing! Supplement with up to 1 tbsp canola oil (swirl to coat).
- Add salmon to pan, skin side facing up. Sear salmon for 6 minutes without moving it. Flip the salmon over so the skin side is down, cover with a lid, and continue cooking. The rule of thumb for salmon is 10 minutes cook time per inch of thickness. Be sure to check how the salmon is doing every 30-60 seconds during the covered cook time – you don’t want to overdo it. Slide a knife between flakes and assess the color – when the darker portion is less than ¼ of the height of the flake, you can remove the skillet from heat and transfer the fish.
- Divide the salmon into four pieces. Plate with roasted potatoes and top with corn sauté. Enjoy!