Garam Masala Salmon with Carrots, Pistachios, and Orzo
Chef Liz adds a special feel to roasted salmon fillets with a rich, fragrant sauce. She melts butter with pistachios and sweet, warming garam masala—the butter gently cooks and browns in the pan while the spices and nuts toast. It's all served over a mix of orzo, parsley, roasted carrots, and orange wedges for the burst of citrus we crave this time of year.
Total cook time
- 8 ounces carrots
- 1/4 ounce parsley
- 1/4 cup pistachios
- 2 red onions
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 navel oranges
- 1 cup orzo
- 1 1/4 pounds salmon
- 2 half sticks unsalted butters
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- olive oil
- kosher salt
- black pepper
Preheat oven to 425ºF. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil over high heat. Rinse all produce. Thinly slice carrots crosswise on a diagonal. Roughly chop parsley leaves and stems. Roughly chop pistachios, or leave in bag and gently crush with the bottom of a heavy pan. Peel onions, halve, and thinly slice. Thiny slice garlic. Using a knife, peel oranges, discarding skins and pith. Halve oranges, then cut crosswise into .25-inch half-moons.
Season boiling water generously with salt. Stir in orzo and cook until al dente, about 12 minutes (see recipe tip). Drain and return to pot, off heat. Meanwhile, on a foil-lined baking sheet, toss carrots, onions, and garlic with 1 tablespoon olive oil, .5 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Arrange in a single layer on 1 half of baking sheet (leaving room for salmon in the next step).
Pat salmon dry with paper towel and add to other half of baking sheet, skin-side down. Season tops of salmon with 1 teaspoon salt and pepper, then drizzle over 1 tablespoon olive oil and rub in seasoning. Roast until salmon is cooked through and opaque, carrots are tender, and onions are browned and softened, 12-14 minutes.
While salmon and vegetables roast, heat butter, garam masala, and pistachios in a medium pan over medium heat. Swirl pan occasionally until butter turns golden and fragrant and nuts are toasted, 7-8 minutes (see recipe tip). Season with .5 teaspoon salt and pepper as desired. Remove pan from heat and set aside until ready to serve.
To pot with orzo, still off heat, stir in parsley, orange pieces, and roasted vegetables to combine. Season orzo with .25 teaspoon salt and pepper as desired.
Divide orzo among serving plates. Top with roasted salmon, then spoon over garam masala–brown butter and pistachios. Enjoy!
All recipe ingredients should be cooked to a safe internal temperature according to USDA guidelines. After preparing a recipe, please store any leftovers in the refrigerator.