Dad’s Marinated Salmon


I wasn’t a fussy child when it came to food. My two favourite things to eat as a four year old were marinated salmon and yellow pasta – pasta made with gorgonzola and saffron. I remember my parents always telling people I had expensive taste; I didn’t really know what that meant.

Each time I’d arrive at my Dad’s restaurant in Frankfurt I’d ask for the cold salmon. My dad would say, ‘OK… Come with me and let’s see if we have it today’. I’d run over to the antipasti section, the kinds you get in traditional Italian restaurants, stand on tip toes and peer into the tempting display to see if it was in there.

When my mum, brother and I moved to England, it became a kind of tradition that each time my Dad came to visit we’d make the marinated salmon together. We’d almost certainly make it on Good Friday, because it was fish Friday. In our household we weren’t actively religious, but Dad being Italian and ‘Catholic’, and Mum being taught by nuns at school, we somehow had it embedded in us to never eat meat on Good Friday.



½         Side of a medium salmon

2          Lemons

4          Spring onions

5tbsp  Olive oil

1tbsp  Balsamic vinegar

1tsp    Sugar

Salt and pepper



  1. Make the marinade – Juice two lemons and pour into a bowl along with the olive oil, balsamic, sugar and seasoning. Finely chop the spring onions and add to the bowl. Stir to mix all the ingredients together. Set aside.
  2. Lay the piece of salmon onto a chopping board. Using a very sharp knife carefully slice thin pieces and place in a deep serving dish. Continue to do this until all of your salmon has gone. Throw away the skin.
  3. Pour the marinade on top of the thinly sliced salmon. Make sure all of the salmon is covered.
  4. Cover with clingfilm and leave to marinade in the fridge for 24 hours.
  5. Serve as antipasti with bread. Alternatively serve it on top of a green salad for a nice summer lunch.



*Make sure to taste the marinade to see if it needs more seasoning or sugar. It also may need a little more olive oil, if it tastes really sharp from the lemons. It does have a lemony kick, but you don’t want it to be so sharp that it is unpleasant.

*Depending on how big your piece of salmon is you might need more marinade. You could double the marinade ingredients and if it’s too much, jar it up for a zingy salad dressing.

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