Friday, March 11, 2005

salmon with lemon-basil cream sauce

First, there is NOTHING wrong with a small amount of cream sauce. Used appropriately, it is a great way to add flavour and texture to fish that can at times be dry. The key is to end up with a couple tablespoons, no more, for each serving, and to ensure that it is strongly flavoured enough to make a difference.

Ok, so the recipe:

salmon - 3-4oz per serving. Cut into serving size before cooking
about 1 cup of white wine
salt, pepper & sugar
1/3 cup chicken stock (or fish stock as long as it's not too strong)
1/3 cup cream (whipping cream. If you use 1/2 and 1/2, bad things will happen. There is no "lite" version of this recipe.)
zest of 1 lemon
1/4 cup chopped basil
1 sliced red bell pepper

Poach the salmon in the wine (covered) until it is not quite done. Remove the salmon to a warm, foil-covered plate and keep in a warm (not hot) oven. Add the chicken stock to the wine, bring to a simmer, and toss in the bell pepper. Cook til tender-crisp, then remove pepper slices to the same plate the salmon is on. Keep in oven. Reduce wine/stock mixture a bit, add cream, lemon zest and basil, and reduce until there is only a couple tablespoons left. Add basil, season to taste (you may not need the sugar - it depends on what kind of wine you used. But the salt and pepper you will definitely need). Put the peppers back in the sauce and toss around to coat. Serve salmon sprinkled with a bit of salt & pepper on a bed of brown rice, top with peppers and cream sauce.

(Note: this is a one-pot dish, too!)


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