Walking around the supermarket this morning and the fresh salmon fillets sent my creative juices into a tizz – 20% off – I’ll have two.
Half an hour later I was back home in the kitchen unpacking my haul.
“Whats for lunch dad?”
“Salmon…you can give me a hand if you like.”
“Just give me a shout when it’s ready. I’ll be in my room.”
So here it is, my first blogging recipe for two. Light, simple and ‘appreciated’ by teenage offspring. Made this many times since its initial creation as family and friends seem to love the crisp crunch of the croutons and gherkins with the soft flaky salmon.
2 boneless cuts of Salmon fillets. Not from the tail end. Buy thicker fillets from the middle of a whole fillet.
2 tbsp olive oil.
25g unsalted butter.
salt and pepper.
6 small pickled gherkins.
80g plain flour.
1/2 tsp salt.
1/2 tsp sugar.
150ml tonic water.
Apple and cider dip:
1 tbsp white wine vinegar.
knob of butter
1/2 of a lemon.
Pinch of sugar.
Salt and pepper to season.
Salad and Croutons:
1 small bag fresh rocket salad.
1 slice thick white bread – for croutons.
2 tbls olive oil.
15g unsalted butter.
One – prepare salmon:
Check salmon fillets for bones – even boneless can sometimes have the odd bone.
Scrape the scales off the skin using a blunt knife.
Rinse the salmon fillets under cold water, dry on kitchen paper, store in fridge for later.
Two – salad:
Wash and dry the rocket salad. Set aside in the fridge.
Three – prepare croutons:
Cut slice of bread into approx’ 1/2 inch squares.
In a frying pan gently heat the olive oil and butter until butter has melted.
Add the squares of bread to the pan and gently cook until golden brown on both sides.
Note: You can drizzle a little more oil into the pan, as the croutons cook, if you think
it needs it.
When croutons are golden brown remove from the pan, drain on kitchen paper and set aside for later.
Four – make apple and cider dip:
You will need a small pan with a lid.
Peel, core and slice apples – set aside in a bowl of water with a squeeze of lemon – this stops the apples from going brown.
Peel and chop the shallots into a small dice.
Melt the butter in a small pan and add the onions – gently cook/sweat until onions are soft. Do not brown.
When the onions are soft add the white wine vinegar and reduce on a low heat until absorbed by onions.
Now add the cider and the drained sliced apples to the onions, put a lid on the pan. Cook, for 3 minutes, on a gentle heat until the apples have softened.
Add a pinch of sugar and season with salt and pepper. Set aside for later.
Tip: If you prefer, a smoother apple dip, pass the cooked mixture through a fine sieve or blend with a hand blender.
Five – Tempura Gherkins:
Have your fryer ready on a medium heat.
Dry your pickled gherkins on kitchen paper and lightly coat with flour – this will help the batter to stick.
Add flour, salt and sugar to a bowl then whisk in the tonic water. Your batter is made.
When ready dip Gherkins into the batter and drop, carefully, into fryer. Cook until batter is golden brown. Keep warm.
Tip: Use bamboo skewers to stab the gherkins – dip the gherkins, on the end of the skewers, into the batter. Still on the skewers dip the gherkins into the hot frying oil for 10 seconds – twist the skewer off the gherkin and fry gherkin until golden brown.
Note 1: If you want a thicker batter add more flour, a dessert spoon at a time, until you have the consistency you want.
For a thinner batter add more tonic water, little by little, until it reaches the consistency you prefer.
Note 2: You can batter and deep fry your gherkins before cooking your Salmon, but I prefer to cook them last as they remain crispy when served.
Six – Cooking the salmon:
You will need a non-stick frying pan.
Now that the prep’ (mise en place) is done, it’s time to cook the salmon.
Season the Salmon fillets with salt and pepper.
In a, non-stick, frying pan add the olive oil and heat. Not too hot.
Skin side down add the salmon fillets to the frying pan. Hold each fillet down, for 10 seconds, as you place them in the pan – stops fillets from curling.
Slowly fry on the skin for 3 minutes. Then turn each fillet onto it’s side to seal the sides. Just 15 seconds on each side.
When the salmon sides are sealed turn salmon back onto its skin and add the butter.
Over a medium heat, continue to cook the salmon, for 3-4 minutes, while basting with the butter. Finish with a squeeze of lemon.
Serve your salmon fillets with washed rocket salad, croutons, apple and cider dip and tempura gherkins. Wedge of lemon optional.
Tip: Drizzle Rocket salad with olive oil.