Olive oil poached salmon

Olive oil poached salmon

Disclosure: Sponsored by Olive Oils from Spain.

Guess how many varieties of olives there are in Spain?

50? 100? 200? Keep going.

There are actually more than 260 varieties, and this is only one of the reasons Spain is the WorldLeader in Olive Oil: producing, commercialising, and exporting this wide variety. From all those olives, different Olive Oils can be produced, resulting in a huge range of Olive Oils with different aromas, flavours and uses.

I took the opportunity recently to use Olive Oils from Spain in a dish where a high quality and properly stored Olive Oil is incredibly important as the cooking medium – Olive Oil poached salmon.

Olive oil

Yep, that’s Olive Oil poached. We all know how to poach food in water or stock, but have you ever tried poaching in Olive Oil?

If you haven’t – you should try it. Cooking fish this way is very gentle, allowing the flesh to retain its deep intense colour with a translucent quality. The end result may look undercooked, but the texture is tender, succulent and silky.

Olive oil poached salmon

And it’s easy. For this dish, I started by briefly brining the salmon for several minutes. When I was ready to cook, all I needed to do was warm the Olive Oil on a gentle heat until it came up to 50°C. The fish was submerged for 12 minutes, while I adjusted the heat occasionally to keep the oil temperature constant and… that was it!

Olive oil poached salmon

I served the salmon with Olive Oil mashed potatoes, made with some of the leftover Olive Oils from Spain that I’d used to poach the fish. It was a highly delicious and satisfying meal.

The same method can be used for other types of fish or seafood. And don’t forget to store your Olive Oil correctly, have a look at the Olive Oils from Spain blog on the best way to keep Olive Oil in its optimal condition.

Alternatively, if you want some recipes or inspiration for using / cooking with Olive Oils from Spain, check out:

Web: tasteourlifestyle.com.au
Blog: blogtasteourlifestyle.com.au
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Twitter: @OliveOils_es_AU
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Olive oil poached salmon

Rating: 31

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Yield: Serves 4

Olive oil poached salmon


  • For the salmon
  • 4 x 100g salmon portions, skinned and boned (please ignore my photo and remove the skin! It's inedible.)
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 1 litre cold water
  • 1-2 cups extra virgin olive oil
  • For the olive oil mashed potatoes
  • 800g potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (reserved from cooking the salmon)


    For the salmon
  1. Remove the salmon from the fridge at least an hour before you're ready to cook so it comes up to room temperature.
  2. Once the salmon is at room temperature, mix together the water and the salt in a bowl/dish that's large enough to hold all the salmon in a single layer.
  3. Add the fish and let it soak in the brine for 3-4 minutes.
  4. Remove all the fish from the brine and pat dry with paper towels.
  5. Add the olive oil to a pot - you want it to be just large enough to hold the salmon and enough olive oil to cover. The more snug the pot, the less oil you'll use. If you're not sure how much oil you'll need, put the salmon into a pot, add enough olive to just cover, and then remove the fillets and set aside for now.
  6. Turn the heat on to medium and heat the olive oil until it's 50°C.
  7. Add the fish to the oil, skinned side up, and cook for 12 minutes, adjusting the heat as necessary to keep the oil temperature at 50°C.
  8. Once the time has elapsed, remove the fish from the oil.
  9. Serve with a drizzle of the cooking oil and olive oil mashed potatoes (recipe below).
  10. For the mashed potatoes
  11. Cook the potatoes in a large saucepan of boiling salted water for 20 minutes or until very tender.
  12. Drain the potatoes well, reserving a cup of the cooking water.
  13. Using a potato masher, roughly mash the potatoes with the cooking water and the olive oil that's been reserved from poaching the salmon. Season with salt and pepper.


You can reuse the oil a couple of times to poach more seafood. Let the oil cool to room temperature and then strain it, although stop straining before you reach the bottom and discard the end amount. Store in the fridge.