Pistachio Crusted Salmon with Maple and Pesto

My Cuisinart food processor has been getting a lot of action lately. With it I’ve discovered the splendours of homemade marinades and sauces by wildly pulsing together ginger, garlic and lemon juice with other random ingredients lurking in the recesses of my fridge. Last night I made a zesty, Cuban-inspired mango mojo sauce with grilled tuna flank, by pureeing mango with lemon, orange juice and hot pepper – Muy bueno!

Tonight, I’m searching for inspiration from the sea once more with this dish. It combines some of my favourite ingredients: salmon, maple syrup, pesto and pistachios. The pistachios have been beckoning me from the bottom shelf of my cupboard for a few months and although I originally intended pairing them with halibut, I couldn’t resist the beautiful and fresh salmon fillets that were on sale yesterday. Enjoy!

(Serves 2)


2 salmon fillets, skin on

3 tbsp store bought pesto

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 tsp fresh ginger, skin peeled

Juice from 1 lemon

1/2 tsp sea salt

Pinch of ground pepper

A few sprigs of fresh parsley or cilantro

1 cup of roughly chopped pistachios, shelled


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. Add all the ingredients except the pistachios to the food processor and pulse together for 5 seconds until well mixed. Place salmon fillets on a sheet of parchment paper and spoon the mixture over top.

3. Chop the pistachios roughly and coat the fillets thickly with the nuts. If you want, drizzle a little extra lemon overtop then bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove from skin by gently gliding a spatula between the skin and the salmon. It should come away easily once cooked.


About gentlemangourmet

My name is Mike and even though I’m not always a gentleman, it’s safe to say I am in love with food. Like my more famous namesake, the kid on the cereal commercial from the early 80′s, I had an ability to eat just about anything and “like it.” I’ve become a tad more discerning since my toddler phase: I prefer Pinot Noir to the customary Shiraz my parents liked, I no longer eat parmesan cheese sprinkled from a container, and can pick out which ingredients I like or don’t in a recipe by smell alone. I blame my Lebanese heritage, my large Lebanese nose (all the better for smelling with) and exposure over the past few years to some exquisite ethnic cooking styles and cuisine, as well as to some stunning, inspiring cooks who are family or friends. I’ve included a lot of their favourite recipes on this site, as well as a few of my own that have become my staples over the years. I hope you find something here that you like. Happy cooking! View all posts by gentlemangourmet

5 responses to “Pistachio Crusted Salmon with Maple and Pesto

  • tearknee

    I was going to ask you what you were making for your cleanse (I contemplated doing it after having white confetti cake for 2 of my 3 meals today), and had horrible visions of you only being able to eat grains with unpronounceable names. Phew. I think I could do a cleanse where I get to eat salmon that looks as good as this.

    • gentlemangourmet

      I know what you mean about cleanses – and there are definitely some out there that require pretty strict adherence. This one is great as it involves cutting out a few of the bad things and eating more of the good things. It has forced me to be more creative using ingredients I might not normally use.

  • Shauna

    That looks phenomenal, and so simple to make. I’m looking forward to giving it a try.

  • Foo Dee

    Did you cook with your mom as a child (or with your dad)? I have a son (I’m guessing a little younger than you) who feels like a gourmet when his meal involves opening more than one can. Just wondering where your mom went right and where i went wrong.

    • gentlemangourmet

      When I was younger, the chef I had the most exposure to was Chef Boyardee. Seriously though, my mom and dad cooked pretty good meals and I was exposed to wonderful spreads at family gatherings, so perhaps I now subconsciously relate good food with nurturing friends and family. I started cooking out of necessity after I moved away from home, though taking baby steps, and then became drawn to cooking as a way to entertain guests, be healthy and be aware of what goes into my food. I’m probably more of a gourmand than a gourmet, as I truly love to eat. I also enjoy the freedom and creativity that cooking allows, though I am still very novice. In the end, if you’re really looking to turn your son on to cooking, you can always play the “girlfriend card”: apparently women like a man who can cook 🙂

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