I came across this recipe for Salmon in one of the library cookbooks that I checked out. I have heard of dry-rubbed ribs, but I’ve never heard of dry-rubbed salmon. It sounded easy since all the ingredients for the rub were just spices and seasonings. When I saw the fish was topped with a cucumber relish (what a perfect summer dish!) I decided it was definitely worth trying.
The ingredients for the salmon couldn’t get any easier. You may have to buy some of the spices if you don’t use these ones often, but fortunately I was luckily and had everything on hand except for dried thyme. Please keep in mind the original recipes serves 4. I didn’t want to mess with halving tablespoons and ¼ teaspoons, so instead I made the full amount of spice mixture. We had large, thick salmon fillets (1lb. split between the 2 of us) and when I covered the fillets with the spice mixture I almost used the full amount. The little that I had left, I discarded.
Before placing the fillets onto the pan make sure you line your pan with foil and lightly coat it with butter. I found this is a great way to cook fish in the oven and it’ll help save a lot of clean up time afterwards. When the salmon is coated with the dry-rub mixture place the fillets on the pan and begin broiling. You can then begin to make the cucumber relish as it’s just enough time to prepare while the fish cooks.
As a side, I served quinoa (previously featured recipe) with this meal. I know I say this a lot, but when everything was ready, I really thought it looked like a dish you’d be served in a restaurant. I was excited to try it and had high hopes because while it was cooking Ryan kept telling me how good it smelled. This was definitely a winner in our house. I tried a bite without the relish and thought the salmon tasted great alone. You’ll notice the mixture has some spicier elements but the brown sugar adds a nice hint of sweetness to balance it out. Paired with the cucumber relish, I thought they were a great combo and made for a really nice summer meal. Ryan really liked this dish too. At one point he said “It’s like fireworks in my mouth!”. It seemed as if the dish got even better as he continued to eat, as the compliments got even sweeter. Ending with a smile and…“Babe you’re an amazing cook.”
Dry-Rubbed Salmon with Cucumber Relish
Adapted from The Best of Cooking Light Everyday Favorites: Over 500 of Our All-Time Greatest Recipes ,by the Editors of Cooking Light Magazine (Amazon affiliate link)
Prep Time: 10 mins.
Total Time: 25-30 mins.
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 salmon fillets
Cucumber Relish Ingredients:
- 1 cup cucumber, chopped
- 1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped
- 1/4 cup onion, diced fine
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
- 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat broiler to 400˚F. Line a jelly roll pan with tin foil and lightly with butter to prevent sticking.
- Combine all of the dry-rub ingredients (except the salmon). Mix thoroughly. Sprinkle and pat spice mixture on top & sides of salmon fillets until covered thoroughly. Discard remaining spice mixture.
- Place fish on jelly roll pan and broil for 8-10 minutes (thin fillets) or 12-14 minutes (thick fillets). Fish should flake easily with a fork when ready.
- While fish is broiling combine all cucumber relish ingredients.
- When ready, serve fish fillets topped with cucumber relish.