This is a mainstay for four Faz restaurants. It started out as a special item at our Oakland location and then customers kept asking for it, so now it’s at all the restaurants! I love the sour n’ spicy chermoula paste that we rub the salmon with. And with the cooling dill-lebni sauce, it’s very more-ish. The saffron pearl couscous is sautéed with eggplant, cherry tomato, arugula and deglazed with white wine and a tiny bit of butter thrown in at the end to keep the couscous from clumping.

Chermoula Roasted Salmon with Dill-Lebni Sauce

Chermoula Roasted Salmon with Dill-Lebni Sauce

Lebni or Labneh is like Greek yogurt in flavor but thickened with a different culture and strained. It’s almost considered a soft cheese in some parts of the world. We buy it in bulk from a Persian purveyor, but it can be bought in Whole Foods too or you can just use Greek Yogurt.

Chermoula Roasted Salmon with Saffron Pearl Cous Cous and Dill-Lebni Sauce


  • 2 6-7ounce wild salmon filets
  • Chermoula Rub for the Salmon:
  • 1/4 cup ground cumin
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled, smashed, sliced, and smashed some more into a very smooth paste.
  • 1/4 cup smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon sumac
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup olive oil!
  • 1/4 cup Kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne (or to desired heat level)
  • Lebni-Dill Sauce:
  • 4 cups Lebni Kefir Cheese/yogurt (sub 3 cups greek yogurt
  • and 1 cup sour cream)
  • 2 Tablespoons dry dill
  • 1 bunch fresh dill, chopped fine
  • 2 garlic cloves, mashed into a fine paste
  • Kosher salt to season


Chermoula Rub:  Mash the Kosher salt with the chopped garlic on a cutting board with the side blade of a knife with a back and forth mashing technique. The salt will draw out the juices and tenderize the garlic into a paste. It's very important the garlic is mashed to smooth paste or it will not spread evenly on the fish. Mix the garlic/salt mixture with the lemon juice and add all the other spices to form a thick paste. Thin out paste with olive oil, just enough to make it pliable.

Chermoula can be made a few days in advance and refrigerated. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Smear the salmon filets 3 to 4 hours before roasting.

Lebni-Dill SauceMix all ingredients in a mixing bowl, taste and adjust adjust seasoning. Refrigerate. Will keep for up to one week.

Preheat oven to 450˚F and place chermoula rubbed salmon filets on a baking sheet. Roast until medium-rare, about 15 minutes. Serve over saffron pearl couscous with a swoop of the sauce underneath or all around. Enjoy!