YouTube
Kitchen Smarts: How to Break Down a Side of Salmon
For the best quality fillets, portion them yourself.
10-17-2018
America's Test Kitchen

There are several reasons to buy a whole side of salmon. First, you can use it to prepare our silky, impressive Roasted Whole Side of Salmon recipe that will both feed and impress a crowd. But buying a whole side of salmon is also a good idea if you plan on breaking it down. It’s more economical than buying individual fillets, and it means all of your fillets come from the same piece of salmon, so they’ll be similarly sized and cook more evenly.

In this video, part of the “Kitchen Smarts” series on America’s Test Kitchen’s YouTube channel, Cook’s Country test cook Morgan Bolling demonstrates the steps you should take to break down a side of salmon, from the time you bring it home to when it’s ready to hit the pan. Here are some of our findings:

  • Check for pin bones: The best way to do this is by draping the salmon over an inverted bowl, then using your fingers to find the bones and tweezers or pliers to remove them.
  • Trim the belly and tail (but save them for later): To create evenly sized fillets, use a sharp knife to remove the belly and save it for salmon cakes or gravlax.

Watch the Video

Featured Equipment

Featured

The Best Chef’s Knife Victorinox Swiss Army Fibrox Pro 8" Chef's Knife

Still the best—and a bargain—after 20 years, this knife’s “super-sharp” blade retained its edge after weeks of testing. Its textured grip felt secure for a wide range of hand sizes, and thanks to its gently rounded edges and the soft, hand-polished top spine, we could comfortably choke up on the knife for “precise,” “effortless” cuts.

The Best Cutting Board OXO Good Grips Carving & Cutting Board

Our favorite bargain board cleans up stain-free and odor-free in the dishwasher and sports rubber strips on both sides that keep its lightweight frame anchored to the counter—and make it reversible.

Subscribe to the America’s Test Kitchen YouTube channel to get alerted whenever we add a new video.


What’s your favorite way to eat salmon? Let us know in the comments!

Comments