This was such a sweet kitchen victory for me. What looks like a well thought-out arrangement of expertly seasoned and topped salmon filets is actually the haphazard compendium of some stuff I had in my cupboard and a lime that was almost ready to become trash.
That’s kind of how I put on makeup: I rifle through drawers and shoeboxes containing partly crusty tubes of mascara and liquid eyeliner, from where I select the least-old creams and colors to spruce up my face. In the case of the salmon above, the crusty liner is instead an old jar of too-hot Jamaican jerk paste from that tiny restaurant near my old apartment, and the creams and colors are juice and spices sprucing up my fish.
Approximate recipe for the lime-jerk parmesan-crusted broiled salmon above:
Thaw some salmon, cut it into slices (food people call these “filets”) and place them on a metal pan, skillet, or other oven-resistant cooking surface.
Throw some spices on it. For this, I used salt, pepper, onion and garlic powders (which always condense so hard I have to bang the tubes against the counter to get a few grains to dribble through the spice holes).
Add a strong-flavored moisturizing agent to keep the fish juicy through its cook time. I used the Jamaican jerk paste.
To balance the unbearable spice of the jerk, I squeezed a lime over the whole thing.
Add a thick layer of parmesan cheese to give the salmon a golden crust, which will make you feel like the dish is succulent. A bonus of this technique is that it usually makes dishes succulent.
To feel like I was making something gourmet, I re-squeezed the lime over the cheese and left the halves on the fish in the oven, so it would “absorb infinite flavor.”
Broil on high, or low, until the salmon looks more pink than salmon.