We're feeling a bit French today, and we thought you might be, too. What'll be on our tables tonight? We're getting our omega-3s in with gingerroot's perfectly Parisian Aromatic Poached Salmon with Rye and Caper Breadcrumbs. Enjoyed with a glass of white wine, we could easily stop there, but tonight, we're skipping happily along to dessert. Because our night wouldn't be truly French without a little sliver of something sweet, now would it?
Serves 4 to 6
1/2 cup gin
1/2 cup water
1 (1 1/2 pound) salmon fillet, preferably wild
3 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh dill, finely chopped
2 tablespoons lemon zest
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup each Pumpernickel and white breadcrumbs (more coarse crumbs than sand)
1 1/2 tablespoon chopped capers
2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1. In a sauté pan or skillet with a lid, add the gin and water. Place salmon in the center of your pan and evenly distribute parsley, dill, and lemon zest on top of fish, pressing down slightly with your finger. Cover pan and bring to a simmer. Cook until desired doneness, about 6-7 minutes. Since you will be covering the fillet with breadcrumbs, it is okay to test doneness with a sharp knife in the center of fillet. Do not overcook. Transfer to a serving platter.
2. While your salmon is poaching, prepare the breadcrumbs. In a skillet, melt the butter, and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the butter begins to brown and is fragrant. Carefully add both types of breadcrumbs, and cook, stirring constantly until they are crisp and golden (well, the rye crumbs will be darker than golden), about a minute. Remove pan from heat and stir in capers, horseradish, and mayonnaise with a heatproof spatula. Shower salmon with your breadcrumbs and enjoy!
The Grocery List
1 (1 1/2 pound) salmon fillet
Fresh Italian parsley
Pumpernickel breadcrumbs (or buy pumpernickel bread and make crumbs!)
1 Meyer lemon
If your pantry isn't already stocked with butter, superfine sugar, vanilla, eggs, mayonnaise, coarse white breadcrumbs, and a regular lemon, add those to your list! You'll also need to snag the gin from the liquor cabinet.
1. In the world of prepping, natural order is sometimes disrupted. Here, it's dessert first. Blend all your ingredients for the tart filling, pour into your tart shell, and bake for 40 minutes. Let cool, and try not to sneak a taste.
2. Now, on to the salmon: chop the parsley and dill, zest the lemon, combine all three, and set aside. Chop the capers, combine them with the prepared horseradish and mayo, and set that mix aside, too.
3. To your skillet, add the gin and water, and then the salmon. Distribute herb mixture atop salmon, cover pan, bring to a simmer, and poach. Drain salmon and transfer to a serving platter.
4. To a medium saute pan, brown butter over medium heat. Toss in breadcrumbs and cook, stirring often, till they're toasted and golden brown. Remove pan from heat, and stir in caper-mayo mixture.
5. Sprinkle breadcrumbs over salmon and feast! But don't forget what's next -- you'll want to save a little room for that tart.
First photo by James Ransom, second by Sarah Shatz