I love a good dinner that is easy and quick to make but looks and tastes like I spent forever making it. This is one of those recipes. It is so impressive, yet so simple. Perfect for a date night or for your next dinner party!
The sweet, flavorful maple bourbon glaze contrasted with the delicate, flaky salmon is just to die for. And I’ve added a tiny bit of cayenne pepper to the glaze to give it a little extra kick. But don’t worry, it’s not actually spicy. The cayenne pepper just adds that extra something that brings out all the delicious flavors in the bourbon and maple syrup.
One quick tip: When reducing a liquid with any type of sugar in it to make a glaze, it is important to take it off the heat at just the right moment. If you don’t let it reduce enough it will be too runny (still delicious, but not quite what you want) and if you let it reduce too long it will become too thick and will literally harden into a candy when it cools off. And that’s a huge headache to clean up. Been there, done that. You can tell it is ready when you scrape the bottom of the pan and the liquid takes a few seconds to fill in the area you just scraped. Thickened, but not too thick.
Now, on to the recipe!
- 12 oz salmon, cut into 2 fillets
- 1 Tbsp grass-fed butter or ghee, melted
- 1/16 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
- 1 tsp sea salt, divided
- ½ cup bourbon
- 4 Tbsp maple syrup
- ½ tsp chili powder
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper
- 1 green onion, thinly sliced
- 1 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- Preheat oven to 425ºF/218ºC.
- Rinse salmon under cold water and pat completely dry.
- Grease a baking dish with butter or ghee.
- Place the salmon fillets in the dish and brush on the rest of the butter or ghee using a pastry brush.
- Sprinkle on pepper and ½ tsp sea salt.
- Set the baking dish aside and prepare the glaze.
- To make the glaze, pour bourbon, maple syrup, chili powder, ½ tsp sea salt, and cayenne pepper into a small saucepan.
- Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring with a flat-headed wooden spoon or heat-resistant rubber spatula.
- After it reaches a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for approximately 10 to 11 minutes or until you have a thickened syrupy glaze. Stir and scrape the bottom of the pan about once per minute during the reduction process. Be careful not to let it simmer too long because the mixture will become too thick and harden once it cools.
- While the glaze is reducing you can bake the salmon.
- Once the oven is hot, place the salmon in the oven on the center rack and bake for about 6-8 minutes. I find that 6 minutes is perfect for fillets that are 1-inch thick in the center. The flesh should be opaque and flake easily with a fork when cooked through. Take care not to overcook the salmon.
- Remove the fillets to plates and spoon the glaze over the fillets.
- Top the salmon with green onion slices and parsley.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!
I hope you enjoyed this recipe! I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments section 🙂