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Pan-Seared Salmon

Posted by & filed under Fish and Seafood.



Please click HERE for detailed instructions on my salmon pan-searing technique.

With the addition of the fish fillets, the pan temperature drops.  Compensate for the heat loss by keeping the heat on high for 30 seconds after adding the fillets to the pan.  If cooking 2 or 3 fillets instead of the full recipe of 4, use a 10-inch skillet and medium-high heat for both preheating the pan and cooking the salmon.  A splatter screen helps reduce the mess of pan-searing.  Serve the salmon with chutney, a fresh salsa, an herb-spiked vinaigrette, or lemon or lime wedges.


  • 4 center-cut salmon fillets, 1-1/4 inches thick (about 6 ounces each),pinbones removed
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon canola or vegetable oil


Heat a 12-inch heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat for 3 minute.  Sprinkle the salmon with salt and pepper to taste.

Add the oil to the pan and swirl to coat the bottom.  When the oil shimmers (but does not smoke), add the fillets skin-side down and cook, without moving, until the pan regains lost heat, about 30 seconds.  Reduce the heat to medium-high; continue to cook until the skin side is well browned and the bottom half of the fillets turn opaque, approximately 4-1/2 minutes.  Turn the fillets and cook, without moving them, until they are no longer translucent on the exterior and are firm, but not hard, when gently squeezed: 3 minutes for medium-rare and 3-1/2 minutes for medium.  Remove the fillets from the pan to a platter and let stand for 1 minute.  Pat the fillets with paper towels to absorb excess fat, if desired.

Serve immediately.


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