Here’s an easy fish recipe with three components – topping, the fish itself and crackling made from the skin. I used a salmon filet (or fillet) but you could really use any type of fish and either pieces or whole fish. What makes this dish is the really simple parsley topping and the salted crackling. The bonus with this dish is that the fish is baked not fried.

The technique uses the skin (after it’s removed from the fish) as a protective cover so it can be baked at a higher heat setting without drying out. I don’t mind cooking salmon with the skin on, especially if I’m frying it. It always crisps up so nicely. Now you probably lose the benefits of the Omega 3’s as a result of the frying so I’m not going to tell you it’s good for you. Everything in moderation folks.

The topping has endless variations. This one came about as you cannot buy a small bunch of parsley and my potted parsley just didn’t do well this summer. So I ended up with a large bunch of parsley. Rather than waste what I didn’t use (I know, all of $1.99), I came up with this recipe. I’ve also mixed parsley, thyme, pine nuts, garlic, olive oil and cheese (sound familiar – yes, pesto) to make an herb crust topping for Chicken and Beef Tenderloin – just don’t use the lemon juice for the tenderloin. Here’s the recipe for my parsley topping.

½ cup chopped Parsley
Zest of 1 lemon, and juice of 1 lemon
2 – 3 tblsp Olive Oil
½ tsp Salt
1 ½ lb salmon filet – skinned or with the skin on

Pre heat the oven to 380f
Mix the chopped parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil and salt
Rub a little bit of oil onto the bottom of your baking dish, lay the salmon on top, slather the parsley mixture on top of the salmon, pour any remaining juice from the mix over the fish
Using the skin, stretch and cover the fish filet – lightly salt the skin
Bake for 15 – 18 minutes
If your salmon didn’t come with skin, reduce the cooking time to 12 – 15 minutes or it will be too dry

When the salmon is done, remove the skin that is covering the fish, the skin should be just starting to get crispy, you can either stop and slice up the crackling at this point or continue baking for another 10 – 12 minutes to get a much crispier (and crumblier) skin – the picture below is with sliced crackling
Cover the fish with foil to keep the moisture in and to keep it warm
Slice or break the crackling into pieces and serve on top of the fish
I served this with a fruit salsa and a spicy cabbage and pea side
As always – enjoy!

Variations: Barbecue the fish on a cedar plank.
Add a finely chopped hot green/red chili to the topping.
Add some Harissa paste to the topping.
Switch up the fish, Haddock, Sole, Sea Bass.

Lemon Parsley Salmon, Indian Cabbage Slaw, Fruit Salsa

Parsley Lemon topped Salmon, Curried Cabbage and Pea Slaw and Fruit Salsa