Salmon with Spring Vegetables
Use wild Pacific Chinook salmon and the freshest vegetables you can find for this dish.
Yield: serves 4
- 16 sugar snap peas, trimmed
- 2 baby turnips, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1⁄2"-thick batons
- 1 cup fresh shelled peas
- 10 spears asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2" pieces
- 8 baby artichokes, outer leaves removed and discarded down to tenderest inner leaves, trimmed, and halved lengthwise
- 5 tbsp. butter
- 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 12 oz. chanterelles, cleaned and quartered
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 baby leeks, trimmed, cut into 1⁄2"-thick rounds, and washed
- 1⁄2 small bulb fennel, trimmed and thinly sliced crosswise
- 4 (6-oz.) pieces center-cut fresh salmon, preferably chinook, or king, salmon
- Leaves of 10 sprigs parsley, chopped
- 4 chives, chopped
- 4 small carrots, peeled, trimmed with 1⁄2" of the stem left intact, and cut into thirds
- 1⁄2 cup crisp white wine, such as Roland Lavantureux Chablis
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Working in individual batches, blanch vegetables just until tender (snap peas 1-2 minutes, carrots 3-7 minutes, turnips 2-3 minutes, shelled peas 3-4 minutes, asparagus 2-3 minutes, and artichokes 4-6 minutes), transferring vegetables with a large sieve or a spider as done to a large bowl of ice water to stop further cooking and to let them cool. Strain 1 cup of the blanching liquid in a bowl and set aside; discard remaining liquid. Drain vegetables and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 275˚. Melt 1 tbsp. of the butter in 1 tbsp. of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chanterelles and garlic and saute until soft, 2-3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper, transfer to a small bowl, and set aside. Wipe out skillet and return to medium-low heat. Melt 1 tbsp. of the butter in skillet. Add leeks and fennel, season to taste with salt and pepper, and stir to coat with the butter. Cover skillet and cook vegetables, stirring often, until soft, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium, add wine and reserved blanching liquid, and simmer, uncovered, until liquid reduces by half, 10-15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, put salmon, skin side down, on a sheet pan, rub all over with the remaining 1 tbsp. oil, and season with salt and pepper. Bake salmon for 12-15 minutes for medium rare. Just before salmon has finished cooking, add remaining 3 tbsp. butter and reserved vegetables and chanterelles to skillet with leeks and fennel. Cook until heated through, about 2 minutes. Stir in parsley and chives and adjust seasonings.
- Carefully peel off and discard skin from salmon. Divide salmon among four warm plates and spoon vegetables and sauce over fish.