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Saffron Salmon Kababs

Naz Deravian

fish main-course


4 Servings

Prep time

15 Minutes

Cooking Time

10 Minutes


873 Kcal


  • About 3/4 teaspoon saffron threads (0.35 grams)
  • Pinch of granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus lime wedges for serving
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely grated
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano, crushed between your fingers
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 ½ pounds skinless salmon (preferably center-cut), cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Fresh herbs, such as mint, cilantro and basil, for serving


  1. Using a mortar and pestle or small bowl and the handle end of a wooden spoon, grind the saffron with a pinch of sugar to a fine powder (about 1/4 teaspoon). Transfer to a large bowl. Bring 2 tablespoons water to a boil in a saucepan, kettle or using the microwave, then let stand for 2 minutes to allow the water temperature to drop slightly. Add to the ground saffron powder, gently stir, cover and steep for 5 minutes.

  2. To the saffron water, add the lime juice, olive oil, garlic, salt, oregano, coriander, pepper and turmeric. Stir to mix, add the salmon pieces and combine until the salmon is well coated. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

  3. As the salmon marinates, prepare a charcoal grill until the coals are ashed over and slightly cooled to medium-hot and or heat a gas grill to medium-high. Skewer the salmon and save any remaining marinade. Grill the skewers, brushing with the remaining marinade and turning every couple of minutes, until tender and buttery, about 10 minutes total. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over the fish. Enjoy, with bites of fresh herbs between bites of salmon.