Easy Grilled Salmon with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce Recipe

Wolfgang Puck's Grilled Salmon with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce


Grilling is practically synonymous with summer. Once the weather warms up we’re sure to smell charcoal and delicious smokiness wafting through our neighbors’ backyards. Hamburgers and hot dogs are traditional grilled fair but when we’re in the mood for something lighter but still satisfying grilled salmon is a great choice. Brighten this salmon recipe with a cool and herbaceous cucumber yogurt sauce, and serve with a warm potato-vegetable salad for a full and healthy meal.


Excerpted from the book WOLFGANG PUCK MAKES IT HEALTHY by Wolfgang Puck. © 2014 by Wolfgang Puck. Reprinted by permission of Grand Central Life and Style. All rights reserved. Photo by Carin Krasner.



For the Warm Potato-Vegetable Salad:

  • 1 pound fingerling potatoes or other small boiling potatoes
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup fresh green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup Champagne vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1/4 cup organic vegetable stock
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

For the Cucumber-Yogurt Sauce:

  • 1 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • Grated zest of 2 lemons
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 1/2 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 English (hothouse) cucumbers, halved, seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the Grilled Salmon:

  • 4 (6-ounce) fresh wild salmon fillets
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Needed for Assembly:
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • Baby basil sprigs
  • Dill sprigs



Several hours before serving, start the Warm Potato-Vegetable Salad:

  • Rinse the potatoes, leaving their skins on. Put them in a saucepan with enough cold water to cover well and add a sprinkling of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat; then, adjust the heat to maintain a steady boil and cook until the potatoes are just tender enough to be pierced easily with a long metal skewer, about 15 minutes.
  • While the potatoes are cooking, bring a saucepan of water to a boil. Blanch the green beans in the boiling water until tender-crisp, 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer them to a large bowl filled with ice and water and shock them to stop the cooking process. Drain well and set aside. Refill the bowl with ice and water. When the potatoes are done, drain them well, transfer to the prepared ice bath, and leave until thoroughly cooled, about 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, stir together the vinegar, sugar, and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
  • Drain and peel the potatoes, using your fingertips and, if necessary, a small, sharp knife to slip off their skins. Cut each potato crosswise into discs about 1/4 inch thick and add them to the vinegar mixture. Add the red onion, toss gently, cover with plastic wrap, and marinate in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours. Set aside the blanched green beans along with the Vegetable Stock, halved tomatoes, and chopped parsley.

About 1 hour before serving, prepare the Cucumber-Yogurt Sauce:  

  • In a bowl, stir together the yogurt, lemon zest, lemon juice, dill, and red onion. Fold in the cucumber and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. 

Prepare the Grilled Salmon:

  • Preheat an outdoor or indoor charcoal or gas grill, or a broiler.
  • Lightly brush the salmon fillets on both sides with olive oil and season lightly with salt and pepper. Grill to the desired degree of doneness, about 4 minutes per side per 1 inch of thickness for medium, 5 minutes per side for medium-well.
  • While the salmon is cooking, complete the Warm Potato-Vegetable Salad: In a sauté pan, stir together the vegetable stock and the potato mixture and warm over medium heat. Stir in the blanched green beans, tomatoes (reserving several pieces for garnish), and parsley. Taste and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper.

Assemble the dish:  

  • Spread some of the Cucumber-Yogurt Sauce on each of four serving plates. Spoon the Warm Potato-Vegetable Salad on top to form even beds. Place a salmon fillet on top of each bed of salad. Spoon more cucumber sauce around each fillet, transferring the rest to a serving bowl to pass at the table. Place the reserved cherry tomatoes on top of the salmon. Drizzle the salmon, tomatoes, and plates with the balsamic vinegar. Garnish with baby basil and dill sprigs. Serve immediately.

What’s one of your favorite grilled meals during summer?

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