Slow Roasted Salmon with Lemon Caper Butter served straight from the oven is an easy yet impressive dish! Each bite melts like butter in your mouth.
This is a simple recipe which makes it a perfect dinner any night of the week yet extravagant enough to serve for company. Slow roasting a whole salmon fillet instead of cutting it into individual servings gives it a wow factor when bringing it to the table. The fillet is covered with lemon caper butter and chopped fresh dill which contrasts beautifully with the pretty pink color of the salmon.
Fresh dill is important here as is fresh minced garlic. If you spent the money for a good salmon fillet, you don’t want to cheapen it by using dried herbs. Buy a bunch of dill, chop a few tablespoons, and freeze the rest. I freeze my herbs in zip top freezer bags and when I need them, I easily break off a portion and chop. Frozen herbs makes chopping a breeze. In fact, I prefer it.
As for the garlic, use a garlic press straight over the melted butter to catch all the bits and juices of the clove. You don’t even need a spoon to make the sauce. I melt the butter in a small pot, add the garlic, then gently swirl the pan around to even the garlic out on the bottom of the pan. When the capers and lemon juice are added, I swirl again.
If you love capers, I encourage you to use more. We end up fighting for every scoop. Those briny little bits are delicious!
After about 20 minutes, the top of the salmon should be evenly opaque and slightly firm to the touch yet easily flaked with a fork. Note that the thinner end of the fillet will be more cooked than the center. I normally like salmon slightly undercooked which makes it buttery. It’s simple to do when slow roasting.
What’s that white stuff oozing on top of my salmon?
It’s albumin and it won’t hurt you. Albumin gets pushed out of the muscle fibers of the salmon as it cooks and congeals at the top. Don’t worry, it’s harmless, it happens, and it’s not your fault. If you see pretty pictures of salmon without this stuff, it’s probably because it was scraped off for the picture. I kept it on the fish because I don’t want you to be alarmed if you saw it on yours and not on my picture. That would be deceitful and I don’t roll like that.
If you want to learn about albumin, check out this link. Otherwise, scrape it off and enjoy.
Slow roasting allows the fat of the fish to render it’s flavor into the flesh making it silky and moist. If you’re unsure, use an instant read thermometer. It should read 120 degrees when inserted into the thickest part of the flesh.
You can either slice into servings or pull the flesh apart with a fork into chunks for a perfect imperfect portion. Either way, this dish will impress.
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Slow Roasted Salmon with Lemon Caper ButterPRINT PIN SAVESaved!
- 2 - 2.5 pound salmon fillet
Lemon Caper Butter:
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons capers drained, more if you like
- ¼ cup lemon juice about 2 lemons
- 2 tablespoons fresh dill chopped - can freeze leftovers
- Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
- Place salmon on baking sheet skin side down, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Roast for about 20 - 35 minutes depending on the size of the salmon, until it’s easily flaked with a fork. I use a fork and gently separate the thickest part of the fillet. If it separates easily with no resistance, it’s done. The top should be evenly opaque and slightly firm to the touch. If you insert an instant read thermometer it should read 120 degrees in the thickest part of the fillet. Note that the thinner end of the fillet will be firmer than the center. I normally like salmon slightly undercooked when roasting because it’s soft and buttery.
- Meanwhile, melt butter In a small saucepan. When butter starts to bubble along the edges, add the minced garlic and stir to coat with butter. Once the garlic is fragrant, about 10 - 20 seconds, add the capers, lemon juice, and chopped fresh dill and stir.
- Once the salmon is cooked, remove from oven and let it rest and pour the lemon caper butter evenly on top of the salmon. Place a few slices of lemons on top and serve. You can either slice into servings or pull the flesh apart with a fork into chunks for a perfect imperfect portion.
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