Salmon with Caramelised Shallot and Mango Salsa

. December, 2015
Photography by Garth Badger.
Salmon with Caramelised Shallot and Mango Salsa

In new recipe book La Latina, Miami-born, Venezuela-raised, New Zealand-based chef Grace Ramirez shares her interpretation of traditional recipes from throughout Latin America.

Serves: 4–6


1 kilogram salmon fillet, skin on
4 bay leaves
4 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
½ lemon, sliced into half-rounds
1 tablespoon liquid honey

1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil
flaky sea salt or pink Himalayan salt
½ tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil
½ cup finely chopped shallots
1 ripe mango, flesh puréed in a blender

juice of 1 lemon
zest and juice of ½ lime
2 tablespoon chopped parsley

2 tablespoon chopped coriander
edible flowers and/or micro watercress

This recipe was inspired by my aunt Morela, who is my grandmother’s sister and the family’s head chef. My grandmother has nine siblings and they are all great cooks, but Morela is considered the star. Her magic hands make anything taste delicious. Anytime we get together for Sunday lunch at her house, at least 50 people show up. That is because she has seven children, and everyone brings their significant other or an extra friend whose eyes light up when they hear that Tía Morela is there. She has inspired me so much, and has had a huge impact in my life and on my cooking. I mostly remember her creative salmon recipes. Dear Tía, I hope you like my Kiwi–Latino salmon.


Preheat oven to 180°C.

Place salmon on a baking dish lined with non-stick baking paper. Make several cuts along the fillet, being careful not to cut too deeply. Tuck bay leaves, garlic halves and lemon slices into the cuts. Brush honey and coconut oil over the fillet. Season with salt and pepper. Bake for 15–20 minutes to give a pink centre, or cook longer if preferred.

Meanwhile, prepare the salsa. To a medium-sized frying pan over a medium-high heat, add coconut oil and shallots. Caramelise shallots until lightly browned, about 8 minutes, then remove from the heat. Stir in mango purée, lemon juice and lime zest and juice, and season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Add chopped parsley and coriander.

To serve: Spread mango salsa on top of the fillets and garnish with edible flowers and/or micro watercress.

Chef’s tip: The flaky salt in the salsa is key to giving this dish the right texture and an unexpected burst of flavour.