Recipe courtesy of Rick Moonen

Crisp Atlantic Salmon Fillet on Mixed Lentils with Moroccan Spiced Tomato Sauce with Harissa

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  • Level: Easy
  • Yield: 6 servings
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Spice mix: 

1/2 cup coriander seeds

1/4 cup cumin seed

1/2 cup fennel seed

2 tablespoons cloves

1/4 cup cardamom

Moroccan Spiced Tomato Sauce:

1/2 cup olive oil

1 cup shallots, peeled and chopped 

1/4 cup garlic, peeled and chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Salt and pepper to taste 

14.875-ounce can harissa (Mediterranean product found in specialty food stores)

12-15 beefsteak tomatoes, chopped


Six 7-ounce skin-on boneless fillets


Spice blend for seasoning 

Butter (1/2 teaspoon per fillet) and olive oil for sauteing


  1. Toast the above in a preheated 350 degree oven for five minutes (or on the stove over medium heat). Grind the mixture in a spice or coffee grinder. Keep in a glass jar, covered tightly. Makes enough for at least 12 7-ounce fillets. Will hold its flavor for 4 weeks. Heat the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat, add the shallots and garlic, and season. Saute until the vegetables are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the harissa and stir. Cook for 3-5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and 4 tablespoons of the spice blend, or to taste. Working in batches, puree the mixture in a food processor, until the liquid is smooth. Set aside until ready to use. Makes enough for at least twelve fillets. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bring two saute pans to high heat, add the olive oil, and when hot, add salmon fillets, skin-side down (do not crowd pan). Shake pans to be sure the fillets are not sticking. Add the butter little bits at a time, shaking the pan to incorporate the butter into the oil. Place pan in oven for 4-5 minutes to roast. To prepare the lentils: Use a blend of yellow and green lentils, and simply follow the preparation directions on the package. Prepare 3/4 to 1 cup of lentils per serving. To serve, mound lentils in center of plate. Place salmon fillet on top, skin side up. Surround with sauce.