Salmon’s versatility invites experimentation. This paprika, citrus, and honey crust complements the succulent and creamy baked salmon, resulting in a complex symphony of flavour and texture that sits well on the spinach hummus.
Spanish smoked paprika is one of my favourite spices. Perhaps related to red peppers being one of my favourite vegetables. A friend brought me some during a recent trip to Spain, and it is well used. There is really no comparison to the generic supermarket variety—the rich smoky aroma is truly intoxicating. The magic here is how to pair that spice with a succulent piece of salmon. Using the citrus and honey together with the smoked paprika resulted in the delicious crust on this delectable paprika salmon,
Such a flavorful combination needs some balance, a counterweight. The spinach hummus provides this. The creamy, nutty chickpea base is enhanced with spinach, coriander, and a head of slow-roasted garlic. This green foundation does look great under the bright orange paprika crusted salmon. It also brings a deep, complex flavour of fresh herbs and vegetables.
I haven’t decided whether the mushrooms enhanced this dish or not. They certainly didn’t detract from it, but perhaps something else might work better. Grilled artichokes, maybe?
I must mention the genesis of the idea for this dish. The smoked paprika roasted salmon with spinach triggered a development process that led to what you read about here. I treat all recipes as an inspiration rather than an endpoint – something to develop further or take in a different direction. And in that spirit, I present this recipe for you to change.
Paprika crusted salmon on spinach hummus
Paprika crusted salmon – Marinade
- 4 Tbsp fresh orange juice about 1 orange
- 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice about 1 lemon
- 1 Tbsp honey
- 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger
- 1 Tbsp minced garlic
- 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt
Paprika crusted salmon – Paprika crust
- 600 g salmon fillet
- 1 Tbsp paprika
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 tsp finely grated orange peel
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 punnet white beech mushrooms about 125 g
- Roast the garlic per the instructions here.
- Drain the chickpeas, retaining the liquid (the aquafaba).
- Using a sieve or muslin cloth, squeeze any residual water from the spinach.
- Coarsely chop the garlic and coriander. The food processor will do the rest!
- Add drained chickpeas, spinach, garlic, coriander, tahini, lime juice, and aquafaba to a food processor.
- Process until smooth.
Paprika crusted salmon
- Combine all the marinade ingredients.
- Remove skin and pin bones from the salmon if necessary.
- Seal the marinade and salmon in a zip-lock bag and marinate in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours.
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 degC, including a baking tray.
- Combine the paprika crust ingredients into a paste.
- Remove the salmon from the marinade.
- Rub the paprika paste into the salmon fillets. Have a slightly thicker layer on the top of the fillets.
- Apply some oil to a foil covered baking tray and lay the salmon on to it.
- Bake until the internal temperature of the salmon reaches 50 degC.
- Remove from the oven, cover and let rest for 10 minutes.
- If the top needs to be a little more crisp, use a cooking torch.
White beech mushrooms
- Sauté the mushrooms in a skillet over a medium heat until starting to brown.
- Smear some spinach hummus on a plate. Top with a salmon fillet. Add some white beech mushrooms.