Salmon is such a versatile fish that can be prepared in a variety of ways, but cooking salmon in Convection is perhaps the easiest way to ensure great results with a minimum of effort.
Convection is ideal for cooking fish because the heated air circulates around the food preserving moisture while the direct heat from the top heating element provides a great sear and cooking food with high heat really enhances the flavor. Another advantage is that other foods can be cooked at the same time for an easy delicious convection meal.
The great thing about our ovens nowadays is that they provide a variety of options for cooking our food. In a steam oven for example, salmon can be poached, roasted at a high or low temperature or broiled and in a convection oven, salmon can broiled and also roasted at a high or low temperature. So the first decision is what method will best suit your recipe.
Convection Broil mode, in this mode the oven heats very quickly and other quick cooking vegetables such as asparagus, mushrooms, peppers and onions or even a corn salsa can be broiled at the same time as the salmon. 450°F is a good temperature to achieve a crisp crust on the salmon while ensuring the fish remains juicy. A little heat tolerant oil or ghee smeared over the top of the fish will ensure the top achieves a slightly crunchy crust.
Some gas ovens feature an infrared broiler, a powerful tool for oven broiling. The heated air may not be circulated by the convection fan when this mode is engaged; however, gas has a natural convection that helps preserve moisture in food and infrared broilers provide amazing results.
The Convection Roast mode is a better choice if you are also roasting a tray of potatoes or vegetables such as cauliflower, carrots, broccoli or brussels sprouts that require a longer cooking time at a more moderate temperature. A good temperature range for roasting vegetables and fish in the Convection Roast mode is 375 - 425°F.
In the Convection Roast mode the top and bottom heating elements will be engaged while the fan circulates the heated air. The heat will not be as powerful as the heat emitted when using the Convection Broil mode; however, if the salmon is placed close to the top heating element you can still achieve a nice sear. Ideally roast the vegetables lower in the oven close to the bottom heating element and arrange the oven racks before you heat the oven so you can easily add the tray with the salmon part way through the cooking.
Which Type of Salmon is Best for Oven Broiling
King salmon, Atlantic and Sockeye salmon are all good choices for oven broiling or for cooking at higher heat in the Convection Roast mode. They all have a decent fat content and only need a little added brush of oil or clarified butter (ghee) to ensure crisping. The timing will depend on the thickness of the cut.
If you are cooking a large portion of salmon, the Convection Roast mode would be the best choice for uniform cooking, however you could easily add a touch of Broil towards the end of the cooking if desired. Smaller 4 - 6 oz uniform portions of salmon are ideal for cooking in the Convection Broil mode.
Broiling or roasting salmon at a high temperature in Convection ensures great results, but salmon can also be seared then cooked at a low temperature in Convection with stunning results. Learn more about cooking salmon at a low temperature here.
In my next post I will review a wonderful method of roasting tomatoes at a low temperature, these slow roasted tomatoes make an amazing accompaniment to fish and meats or added to eggs or vegetable bowls. The more ways we have to cook foods the more varied and interesting we can keep our diets.
Larissa, Your Convection Enthusiast