Roasted Salmon With Cucumber Sour Cream Sauce

My younger son loves salmon, in part because he likes the taste, in part in part. After all, according to him, they are “smart fish.”  Salmon are typically “anadromous:” they are born in freshwater, migrate to the ocean, and then return to freshwater to reproduce.  Folklore has it that salmon return to the exact spot where they were born to spawn.

The word salmon comes from the Latin word salmon, which is believed to have been directed from the word salire, which means “to leap“.  Jumping is what salmon are well-known for.  Believe it or not, they can jump as high as 12 feet.  Some say that salmon jump to avoid obstacles when swimming upstream, but others believe they jump to fill so-called swim bladders with air so that they are more buoyant.  Salmon are native to tributaries of the North Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Currently, the harvest in Alaska represents about 80% of the total wild-caught salmon.

oven roasted salmon

When I was a kid, salmon was the most prevalent fish on menus.  Many people, myself included, shifted away from it when we had the chance.  But it may be time to reconsider.   Salmon is simply loaded with nutrients and may reduce risk factors for several diseases.  Salmon is one of the best sources of the “essential” long-chain omega-3 fatty acids EPA (Eicosapentaenoic Acid) and DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid).

EPA and DHA have been credited with several health benefits, such as decreasing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, reducing the risk of cancer, and improving the function of the cells that line your arteries.  Salmon is also a source of high-quality protein, B vitamins, and potassium.  Research suggests eating salmon may help protect bone health, decrease thyroid antibodies, lower the risk of heart diseases, lower LDL cholesterol, and help with weight management.  Most foods simply don’t offer such health benefits.

Many people are concerned when buying salmon: wild versus farmed?  Here is a link to a thoughtful piece from the State of Washington Department of Health that says, above all, just keep eating salmon (“Both wild and farmed salmon have low levels of mercury, PCBs, and other contaminants…Wild salmon is a great choice and farmed salmon is a good alternative.”).  Another great seafood safety reference is The Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Consumer Guide; this is an easy way to check what fish is safest to eat near you.  As always, remember to buy the freshest you can get from a reputable purveyor, and cook it/freeze it properly.

Safety and sustainability aside, this is a nice easy salmon recipe that I like.  There is nothing fancy about it, but the cucumber sour cream sauce is a wonderful accompaniment to the rich roasted salmon.  In the summer you can grill instead of roast; just remember to apply oil to the grill and fish first, so it doesn’t stick.

roasted salmon

About the Author

Andrea Potischman

I am a professionally trained NYC chef turned CA mom and food blogger. I post about real food, with doable ingredient lists that are family friendly.

2 thoughts on "Roasted Salmon With Cucumber Sour Cream Sauce"

  1. Avatar photo Stephanie Chen says:

    We will definitely be trying this! Looks delicious, and I think even I can make it!

    1. You can do it Steph! I hope you like it.

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