When I saw this slow-roasted salmon on the cover of the June 2012 Bon Appetit, I couldn’t wait to make it. The salmon is placed on a bed of fresh herbs and roasted, along with cherry tomatoes on the vine. The salmon is served with a delicious yogurt sauce made with herbs and lemon zest. The recipe calls for Israeli couscous, also known as Ptitim, which is a toasted pasta in the shape of tiny balls and is quite different from regular couscous. I made it for this recipe and it was quite good, if a bit bland, so I would substitute regular couscous next time. The couscous may have been bland because I couldn’t find za’atar, a Middle Eastern spice that contains sumac, sesame seeds and other spices. If you make this, I suggest you flavour the couscous with your favourite spice combination.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Some yogurts contains additives and preservatives, so check the label. Be sure to use butter than does not contain colour, such as Gay Lea unsalted brand.

Prepare a bed of fresh herbs

Add the salmon and cherry tomatoes

The roasted salmon

Slow-roasted salmon with cherry tomatoes and couscous


Yogurt Sauce

1 cup plain Greek yogurt

½ cup plain yogurt

3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

Kosher salt


6 tablespoons olive oil, divided

½ bunch dill fronds

½ bunch thyme sprigs

1 3-pound piece center-cut skin-on salmon fillet, preferably wild king, pin bones removed

Kosher salt

8 ounces small cherry tomatoes on the vine (optional)

Tomatoes and Couscous

2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided

2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

2 tablespoons za’atar (optional)

Kosher salt

2 cups Israeli couscous

1 tablespoon unsalted butter


Yogurt Sauce

Mix first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl until well combined. Season with salt. Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill.


Preheat oven to 325°. Pour 4 tbsp oil in a roasting pan just large enough to fit the salmon. Make a bed of herbs in bottom of pan; top with salmon, skin side down. Drizzle salmon with remaining 2 Tbsp. oil and season with salt. Top with tomatoes, if using. Bake until salmon is just cooked through in the center (a small knife will slide easily through flesh), 25–30 minutes.

Tomatoes and Couscous

Toss tomatoes with 3 tbsp oil, parsley, and za’atar, if using, in a medium bowl. Season to taste with salt. Set aside.

Bring a medium pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add couscous and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Drain couscous; transfer to a large bowl. Stir in butter and remaining 1 Tbsp. oil. Season to taste with salt. Gently fold tomatoes into couscous.

Use a large spoon or fork to serve salmon, leaving skin in pan. Serve with yogurt sauce and couscous. Serves 4.

From the June 2012 issue of Bon Appetit