Make us your home page

You Asked For It: lemon caper sauce and tartar sauce recipes

We had requests for two seafood sauce recipes served at restaurants:

I would like a lemon caper sauce recipe like the one served with the salmon at Parkshore Grill in St. Petersburg. Thank you.

Kathy McIntyre, Ashtabula, Ohio

The tartar sauce from Red Lobster is the recipe I'd like. Thank you.

Anita Maronpot, Seminole

While both of the replies were copycat recipes, they are both delicious. Restaurant recipes tend to be difficult to re-create at home so we're happy that Lyn Wood of St. Petersburg shared a lemon caper sauce she serves with salmon. While you could prepare the fish in your favorite way, Lyn likes to pan-sear the salmon in butter then add the blended sauce to the pan to heat it before serving. Because capers can be so salty, Lyn recommends either rinsing them before preparing the sauce or taste the sauce before adding any additional salt. You may or may not need it. This sauce has great flavor and would also work well with other fish, including our local favorite, grouper.

It's the rare instance that a major restaurant chain would share a recipe, so Karen Wenner of Palm Harbor turned to If you'd like a little more tang, add a bit of the relish juice from the jar. Add it a little at a time so as not to make the sauce too thin.

Recipe request

Ann Bruno of Clearwater would like a recipe for a cookie she finds in Publix called panecillos de San Francisco. It's an anise-flavored cookie with an oblong shape. Gretchen Murphy of Tampa remembers a blueberry muffin sold from a corner stand on a Tampa street back in the 1960s or 1970s. She says the muffins were huge, delicious and served with a dollop of butter. She hopes someone has a flavorful blueberry muffin recipe.

Recipes tested by Times correspondent Ellen Folkman unless otherwise noted. Send requests to You Asked For It, P.O. Box 1159, Crystal Beach, FL 34681 or email Include your name, city and phone number.


Lemon Caper Sauce

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons minced red onion

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon drained capers, chopped

½ teaspoon grated lemon peel

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Whisk to blend. Season with pepper to taste. Season with salt to taste. Serve over salmon.

Source: Lyn Wood, St. Petersburg


Red Lobster Tartar Sauce (copycat)

½ cup mayonnaise

1 ½ tablespoons finely minced onion

1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish

1 ½ teaspoons shredded and chopped carrot (bits the size of rice)

1 ½ teaspoons sugar

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Makes 4 servings.


You Asked For It: lemon caper sauce and tartar sauce recipes 08/09/13 [Last modified: Friday, August 9, 2013 5:51pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Pasco libraries offer relief from the heat with reading programs, activities


    HOLIDAY — Angelina Ponzo has a goal this summer: to read as many books as possible.

    Alexis Ponzo, left, uses watercolor crayons to draw a heart tattoo on her daughter Angelina's arm during a recent summer reading program event at Centennial Park Library in Holiday. Local libraries are hosting reading programs and a variety of educational, entertaining and family friendly events throughout the summer months.
  2. Want to feel old? It's been 20 years since the first 'Harry Potter' was published


    He was so cute: Blond hair, blue eyes and a killer smile. He was dressed in a black robe with a fake scar on his forehead and regaling our fifth-grade class with his book report on Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. As a 10-year-old with only the most sophisticated of tastes (give me a Baby-Sitters Club any day), …

    An auctioneer holds a first edition copy of the first Harry Potter book "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" containing annotations and illustrations by author J.K. Rowling. The tale has turned 20,  published in Britain on June 26, 1997. Since then, it has sold more than 450 million copies worldwide and has been translated into 79 languages. (Associated Press [2013])
  3. Restaurant review: Deccan Spice in Feather Sound is a gateway to the allures of Indian cuisine

    Food & Dining


    Feather Sound's Tru Lounge, which was Flo Lounge before that, morphed into Grand Siam in 2012, a giant Thai restaurant owned by the folks who had Ban Thai restaurants in Tampa, Clearwater, Brandon and Lakeland. It was lavish with dramatic fluted chandeliers and a long, polished wood sushi bar, but it …

    Some of the selections at a recent lunch buffet at Deccan Spice included chicken biryani, gobi masala and murgh masala.
  4. From the food editor: Almond-Crusted Chicken Tenders will be your new favorite go-to


    I decided my almond chicken obsession was becoming a bit much.

    Almond Crusted Chicken Tenders. Photo by Michelle Stark, Times food editor.
  5. Who topped the Billboard charts 35 years ago? Paul and Stevie, of course


    We really did have it so much better in the early ‘80s. Just check out the Billboard top 5 songs for the week of June 26, 1982.