The fourth blog in the Guest Post Series by Jill Mant
I love salmon! Give me salmon sashimi, lox and bagels, salmon filet, salmon steaks or salmon mousse and I am in fish heaven. I love the color, the texture and the flavor. I know it’s unhealthy to eat farmed salmon but this is not salmon season and the line-caught, wild Coho Salmon or Alaskan King Salmon I adore just aren’t available right now. So the other day when I saw the back end of a salmon waving at me from the cooler in Costco I grabbed it and brought it home.
Before I married my husband I didn’t cook meat at home. It wasn’t that I was a true Pescaterean, because I did indulge in meats when I went out occasionally, it was just that at home I ate fish or vegetable for all of my meals. It was shortly after Colin moved in that I noticed him gazing longingly at the array of steaks and chops at Costco. He turned to me with puppy dog eyes and I heard him utter “Can we please get some meat?”
That was over two years ago and I must say I have been transformed into somewhat of a carnivore, but I still can’t let a week go by without making fish at least once and more often two or three times.
Last night’s salmon exemplifies everything I love about fish in general and salmon specifically. The meat was moist and succulent and melted in my mouth. The flavor of the fish was prevalent while not overpowering. The distinctive taste of the salmon was infused with the white wine, mustard and lemon bath it had poached in and it married well with the kale and radicchio stuffing without competing with it.
- 3-4 lb piece of whole salmon
- 3 Tbsp Butter, divided into 1 and 2 Tbsp
- 1 Tbsp EVO
- 3 cloves Garlic, finely chopped
- 4 Shitake Mushrooms, chopped
- 3 Button Mushrooms, chopped
- 1 bunch Kale, stems removed and torn into small pieces
- 1/2 small head of Radicchio, sliced and then cut to create pieces similar in size to the Kale
- 1 tsp fresh Thyme leaves
- 1 Tbsp Pine Nuts
- 1/2 cup fresh Bread Crumbs
- 1 large Egg, beaten
- 1 cup Sauvignon Blanc
- 2 Tbsp Stone Ground Mustard
- 1 lemon-half juiced and half sliced in thin slices
- 1 generous Tbsp Flour
- 1/8 cup Half and Half
- Salt and Pepper
- Preheat oven to 350
- Cut tail off of fish if you have the back end, cut the head off if you have the front end.
- Remove the bone running down the middle of the fish, as well as any other ones you see.
- Lay the fish out flat, skin side down.
- Heat EVO and 1 Tbsp Butter in a large saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the garlic to the pan and stir for 30 seconds.
- Add the mushrooms and thyme to the pan and cook for about 3 minutes, until browned and fragrant, stirring frequently.
- Add Kale, Radicchio and Pine nuts to the pan and mix well. Cook for about 3-4 minutes or until the Kale and Radicchio are wilted
- Add bread crumbs to the pan. Turn heat off and mix well.
- When the vegetable mixture has cooled stir in the egg. Season with salt and pepper
- Spread the Kale mixture over the fish to cover.
- Fold the fish over the Kale mixture, essentially closing the fish.
- In an oven proof ceramic container big enough to hold the fish, but not much bigger, mix the wine, lemon juice and mustard to combine.
- Place the fish in the liquid and arrange lemon slices over the top of the salmon.
- Bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove fish to a platter.
- In a small saucepan make a roux out of the remaining butter and flour.
- Slowly pour in the liquid from the fish, mixing it in with a wooden spoon and pressing any lumps against the side of the saucepan with the spoon to remove them and incorporate the flour into the sauce.
- Add the half and half and mix well. Season with salt and pepper.
- Cut the fish into slices, carefully laying them down on each plate to keep them intact. Drizzle with sauce and serve.
All in all this delicious main dish is a beauty. It’s perfect for a dinner party as you can prepare most of it ahead of time and just pop it in the oven about 35 minutes before you want to serve your meal. The sauce takes no more than 5 minutes to whip up and accompanied by a wild rice medley and a lovely green salad you have a delicious and healthy dinner I am certain your guests will enjoy.
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