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Pan-Crisped Salmon with Light Garlic Dijon Cream Sauce

Pan-Crisped Salmon with Light Garlic Dijon Cream Sauce

There aren’t a lot of seafood recipes on this blog. I know that. I am trying so hard to like seafood more. I should, considering I grew up near the coast. But the thing is – most of the seafood I ate in the first 21 years of my life was deep fried. My personal favorite was fried crab claws, which is apparently an Alabama thing because I never see them anywhere else, but I’ve since learned to appreciate crab in other forms (like in these awesome crab cakes). What I’m trying to tell you is that my tastebuds weren’t really exposed to seafood until well after college. Unless you count sushi, which I love. Yes, I realize it’s weird to like raw fish and not cooked fish. What can I say? I’m a complicated person. ;)

Next to mild white fish varieties, salmon has been my go-to seafood to try. There’s exactly one other salmon recipe on this blog, and it’s a good one. I figured it was time to branch out, especially since I want Clara exposed to different foods early on. I’m still trying to be the best version of myself for her, and the best version of me is unafraid to try new things. So when this recipe popped up in my Reader (RIP), I knew I had to try it. I wasn’t sure I would even like it, but I trust my friend Tara and know she wouldn’t post something that wasn’t totally awesome. So I took the plunge and am so happy I did. The salmon in this recipe is cooked skin side up, so the top of the fish ends up wonderfully crispy. I almost hated to top it with sauce because it looked so good on its own, but I have a thing for mustardy cream sauces, and this one was especially delicious. It’s rich and flavorful, with punch from the garlic and Dijon. We served this fish with sautéed asparagus, and I put quite a bit of the sauce on top of it, too. We loved this and were so, so happy that Clara enjoyed it too. Here’s to hoping that she grows up with an appreciation of many different types of food.

Pan-Crisped Salmon with Light Garlic Dijon Cream Sauce

Pan-Crisped Salmon with Light Garlic Dijon Cream Sauce

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 2-4 servings

Pan-Crisped Salmon with Light Garlic Dijon Cream Sauce


4 salmon filets (about 4 ounces each) – skin on
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 small shallot, diced
1 teaspoon fresh sage, chopped
1½ tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
¼ cup dry white wine
¾ cup low-fat evaporated milk
1½ tablespoons Dijon mustard


Check the salmon for bones and remove them, if necessary. Season the filets with salt and pepper.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Place the salmon skin side up in the pan and cook for 8-10 minutes, or until the salmon is fairly firm and the sides are turning opaque/white. Transfer to a plate and keep warm.

Reduce heat to medium and melt the butter. Add the garlic, shallot, sage and thyme and cook, stirring frequently, for about 1 minute. Stir in the wine and scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Whisk in the evaporated milk and mustard and continue cooking for another 1-2 minutes, until the sauce bubbles and thickens. Remove from heat and pour the sauce over the salmon before serving.


  • Eileen

    Ooh, this sounds so good! I especially love the idea of that tangy mustard sauce. Such a perfect summer dinner. :)

  • ItsJoelen

    That looks delicious and I love the printed plates you’re serving the salmon on!

    • Courtney

      Thanks! These are the plates we got when we got married, and I love the way they photograph.

  • Tracey

    I’ve been obsessed with salmon lately and this looks amazing! Definitely going on our menu soon.

  • annieseats

    Mmm, can’t wait to try this. I was just craving salmon today and then Andrew asked for it, so this is perfect timing!

  • Josie

    This makes the 3rd time I’ve starred this recipe – clearly a sign that it needs to happen soon :)