Position a rack in the oven 3 inches from the broiler. Line a half sheet pan with aluminum foil and place the salmon on the pan.
Place the sugar, zest, salt, and pepper into the bowl of a small food processor and process for 1 minute or until well combined (or just mix well, in a bowl). Evenly spread the mixture onto the salmon and allow to sit for 45 minutes, at room temperature.
Move the salmon to another piece of aluminum foil, on a quality baking sheet. This step is IMPORTANT! The juices that have mixed with the sugar, and come out of the salmon can EASILY catch fire, under the broiler (this happened to me-first time). Putting the fish on a clean sheet helps prevent this. Also, an inferior baking sheet can warp under the high temps, causing the fish to cook unevenly.
Turn the oven on to the high broiler setting for 2 minutes. After 2 minutes, place the salmon into the oven and broil for 6 to 8 minutes or until the thickest part of the fish reaches an internal temperature of 131 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove the salmon from the oven and allow to rest, uncovered, for 8 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately.
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