If I had to choose my go-to meal for serving a big crowd when I’m short on time, there’s no question it would be a whole roasted side of salmon. It’s a trick that I picked up in my first job as an event planner for a catering company — we served a side of salmon at almost every single party, and changed up the marinade and garnishes based on the rest of the dishes. Mexican flavors on the menu? Chile-glazed side of salmon with salsa verde. Traditional steakhouse vibe? Serve it up with red onions, herbs, and horseradish cream. It always looked impressive and was always a massive hit.
Now when I’m making salmon for dinners at home, I stick to my tried-and-true cooking time and temp (see the recipe card below) and usually serve it on a big family-style platter in the middle of the table, paired with some great roasted veggie sides. For the Welcome Spring dinner party I hosted last month, I garnished it with citrus of every type and color, from lemons to tangerines to blood oranges, then thinly sliced them and layered all over the top of the salmon in a fish scale pattern for tons of “wow” factor.
Also on the menu:
- 1 2-lb. skinless salmon fillet, bones removed
- extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 blood oranges, divided
- 2 meyer lemons (or regular lemons), divided
- 1 fresno chile, thinly sliced
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 bunch fresh dill
- Preheat the oven to 350. Place the salmon on a foil-lined baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, then top with zest and juice from 1 orange and 1 lemon. Scatter the chile slices over the salmon and season with salt and pepper. Roast until salmon is just cooked through, about 22 minutes.
- Carefully transfer the salmon to a serving platter, pouring any remaining oil from the roasting pan over the top of the salmon. Thinly slice the remaining orange and lemon, and scatter over and around the salmon, then garnish with dill sprigs. Serve!