Lemony Salmon with Cherry Tomato Couscous

Total Time:
35 min
20 min
15 min

4 servings

  • Heaping 1 cup couscous
  • 3 teaspoons kosher salt or 1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh gingerroot
  • 1 cup freshly boiled water
  • 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped (about 1/4 cup)
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • 1 tablespoon garlic flavored oil, plus 1 teaspoon
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 4 salmon fillets
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • This is one of those recipes that is easier to follow than to write: that's to say, there are many bowls involved, which might make this look troublesome and fiddly, but the actual process involved is almost insultingly simple.

  • Now, I know that it is not strictly right to indicate that you cook couscous by pouring boiling water over it. In an ideal world, I accept, one should soak the grains in cold water before steaming them over hot, but I take the shortcut, and repeatedly and I apologize to those whom I thereby offend.

  • Put the couscous into a heatproof bowl, with 2 teaspoons kosher salt (or 1 teaspoon table salt), 1/4 teaspoon of the paprika, and all the grated ginger. Give everything a bit of a mix before adding the hot boiled water. Cover the bowl, either with plastic wrap or a plate, and set aside.

  • Into another bowl, put the finely chopped onion.

  • In a wide, shallow dish, big enough to take the salmon fillets later, zest the lemon into the dish.

  • Squeeze the lemon juice into the bowl with the onions.

  • Add the remaining salt and the paprika to the bowl with the lemon zest and stir in 1 tablespoon garlic flavored oil.

  • Halve the cherry or grape tomatoes and put them into yet another bowl. Stir in the remaining teaspoon of garlic flavored oil and set aside.

  • Heat a large frying pan for the salmon fillets. While the pan is getting hot, add the fillets to the dish with the lemon zest and coat both sides with the mixture.

  • Put the fillets in the hot pan and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, depending on thickness. The fillets should be juicy and have a vivid coral color in the middle, so do check as you cook.

  • Meanwhile, uncover and fluff the couscous, which should have absorbed all the water. Add the tomatoes with lemony onion mixture and stir with a fork.

  • Add nearly all of the cilantro to the couscous, and stir it through, then taste for seasoning, adding more salt if needed.

  • Spoon some couscous onto each plate and arrange a salmon fillet alongside. Sprinkle with a little more cilantro as you hand out each plate.

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