Harissa Salmon with Cool Yogurt Herb Sauce

Harissa is one of those magical ingredients that makes everything it touches taste fabulous. In case you haven’t had the pleasure of having harissa in your life, I’ll explain a little about what it is. Harissa is a hot chili pepper paste that originated in Tunisia. Harissa is very popular all over the Middle East and is widely used as a condiment served with soups, couscous, fish, meat, veggies, and more. It’s kinda like Tunisian pesto with a kick. 

Speaking of kick, harissa makes an absolutely delicious marinade for all sorts of things, including salmon. This version of harissa salmon sears in the flavor and spice of the harissa, and then balances out that heat with some cool yogurt herb sauce. So divine! Serve this with an herby couscous or a cucumber salad for a super yummy (and quick) dinner. 


Harissa Salmon

2 fillets of salon, patted dry

2 Tbsp. harissa paste 

1 Tbsp. olive oil

Juice from 1 lemon 

Salt and pepper

Extra olive oil for cooking, if needed

Cool Yogurt Herb Sauce

½ c. Greek yogurt

Juice from ½ lemon

1 Tbsp. mint, finely chopped

1 tsp. Greek oregano

1 tsp. garlic powder

Salt and pepper

Red pepper flakes, if desired

Combine all ingredients for the salmon in a glass dish and marinate for 1 hour in the refrigerator. 

Combine all ingredients for the yogurt sauce in a small bowl. Chill in the refrigerator while you cook the salmon.

To cook the salmon, heat a skillet over medium high heat until it is very hot. Add a bit of olive oil (1 Tbsp. max) to the skillet if the salmon isn’t oily from the marinade. If it’s still nice and oily, no need to add olive oil to the skillet. Cook the salmon fillets skin-side up for about 3-4 minutes so that the “presentation side” is pretty. Reduce the heat to medium and carefully flip over the fillets. Season the salmon liberally with salt and pepper.  Cook for another 3-4 minutes, or until cooked through. 

Serve the salmon with the cool yogurt herb sauce (on top or on the side). Enjoy!

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