LIVING: Broiler makes quick, easy work of Iraqi salmon dish

This image released by Milk Street shows a recipe for broiled curried salmon. (Milk Street via AP)

Grilling is a great method for quickly cooking fish, but the weather isn’t always on your side.

So instead, take your salmon indoors and use the broiler to replicate the flavors you get from cooking over fire. This recipe was inspired by the Iraqi dish known as masgouf — fish grilled, then smothered with cooked onions and tomatoes.

To build layers of flavor, we season the salmon with curry powder, salt and pepper, then set it aside while the vegetables are prepared. Sliced onions and cherry tomatoes are roasted until the tomatoes begin to burst, then are tossed with a mixture of tomato paste, coriander and lemon juice. The fish gets nestled into the tomato mixture, with a bit spooned over each filet, and it all is broiled until the tomatoes are jammy and caramelized, and the fish flakes easily.

Iraqi-Style Broiled Salmon with Tomatoes and Onions

Start to finish: 35 minutes

Servings: 4 1 teaspoon curry powder


Kosher salt and ground black pepper

Four 6-ounce center-cut salmon fillets (each 1 to 1¼ inches thick), patted dry

1 medium red OR yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced

1 pint cherry OR grape tomatoes

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

2 tablespoons tomato paste

2 tablespoons lemon OR orange juice, divided, plus 1 tablespoon grated lemon OR orange zest

1 teaspoon ground coriander OR ½ teaspoon ground ginger OR both

½ cup lightly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped


Heat the oven to 475°F with a rack in the upper-middle position. In a small bowl, stir together the curry powder, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Season the salmon all over with the mixture; set aside.

In a broiler-safe 9-by-13-inch baking dish, stir together the onion, tomatoes, 2 tablespoons oil and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Distribute in an even layer and roast until the tomatoes begin to burst, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the tomato paste, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, the coriander and ½ cup water. In another small bowl, stir together the parsley, the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice, lemon zest and ¼ teaspoon pepper; set aside for serving.

Remove the baking dish from the oven and turn the oven to broil. Stir the tomato paste mixture into the onion and tomatoes. Nestle the salmon skin side down into the mixture, then spoon some of the onion and tomatoes over the top. Broil until both the salmon and tomato-onion mixture are spotty brown and the fish flakes easily, 4 to 6 minutes.

Cool for about 5 minutes, then spoon the parsley mixture over the top.


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