How to Debone a Salmon Steak

About 15 years ago, I bought a salmon steak on a whim because it looked tasty and was cheaper than the other salmon alternatives. After cooking it up, I was very put off by all the bones…and as a result, I went nearly 14 years before purchasing another salmon steak. Since reentering the fray, I’ve purchased a few and worked out a technique to get rid of the bones to fully enjoy the salmony goodness! Rather than writing the steps here and showing the pictures below, I’ll use captions to describe each step. Enjoy!

Pat your salmon steak dry, and place it on a large cutting board.
1. Begin by using a paring or fillet knife to make cuts on either side of the spine to release the fillets. 2. Remove the bones from each fillet. There are two main places where the bones are. One is where the tweezers are located in the picture…there’s a strip of them moving in the direction of the tweezers on either side of the spine. The next set of bones is part of the rib cage, and you can see those bones at the bottom of the upside down Y attached to the spine. You can get these when you make your step 1 cuts, and you can use tweezers to remove any remaining bones.
Cut through the skin at the top of the fish to separate your two fillet strips.
Optional removal of the skin: Face your knife at a slight downward facing angle, and work it between the skin and your salmon flesh. This step takes some practice, so be patient.
Your salmon is ready to cook! We wrapped the “belly flap” in with the rest of our salmon and seared the side for even cooking. But, if you skip the skinning step, we find that searing the skin is a great way to start.

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