Pan-fried salmon with watercress sauce

by Webmaster, 16th March 2020

The classic accompaniments of watercress, cherry tomatoes and new potatoes showcase seasonal salmon excellently


• 250g new potatoes
• 8 vine cherry tomatoes
• Olive oil
• 2 salmon fillets, skin on, descaled
• 2 tbsp chopped chives
• 1 tsp lemon zest
• 125g trimmed green beans

For the sauce:
• 1 tbsp butter
• 2 small shallots, finely diced
• 1 bay leaf
• 75ml dry white wine
• 100ml vegetable stock
• 50g watercress, roughly chopped
• 50ml double cream

1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Place new potatoes in a pan of salted water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 mins, or until cooked. Drain.
2. Place the cherry tomatoes on a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Pop into the oven for around 15 mins, or until the tomatoes are soft.
3. Meanwhile, place a large frying pan over a high heat and add a splash of oil. Prepare your salmon fillets by patting them dry and seasoning well with salt and pepper. Once oil is very hot, place the fillets into the pan, skin side down. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 2 mins, or until skin is golden and crisp. Turn the fillets carefully and cook for 10 mins to colour. Transfer to a baking tray and place into the preheated oven for 5-10 minutes, depending on how well done you like your salmon. Then remove from the oven and allow to rest for a few minutes before serving.
4. To make the sauce, place the frying pan back onto a medium heat and add the butter. When it starts to foam, add the diced shallots, the bay leaf and a pinch of salt. Fry gently for a few minutes, or until the shallots are soft and translucent, then pour in the wine. Reduce the wine by half, then add in the vegetable stock and bring to a simmer. Stir in the watercress and cook for 30 seconds only, before removing from the heat.
5. Pour the watercress mixture into a food processor and blend on high speed. Add the cream and blend again, then taste and add salt if necessary.
6. Tip the cooked potatoes back into the dry saucepan. Add 1 tbsp olive oil, the chives, zest and some salt and pepper, then crush with a potato masher.
7. Finally cook your green beans in salted boiling water for 3 mins. Drain.
8. Serve the crushed new potatoes, green beans, roasted tomatoes and salmon with a generous amount of sauce.

Recipe and imagery courtesy of www.watercress.co.uk



Tanners’ wine aficionado Tiffany Vernon has a duo of delicious whites – one from France and one from New Zealand – to enjoy with this recipe.

Watercress is the dominant flavour in this recipe and the sauce calls out for a crisp, dry white that’s both herbaceous and citrusy, so Sauvignon Blanc springs to mind.

First, crack open a bottle of Churton Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough (£15.70), which is lighter on the passionfruit character compared with a lot of New Zealand Sauvignons. Instead it oozes a medley of grapefruit, lemon, apple and gooseberry coupled with mango and grassy undertones. This is perhaps more comparable to a fruity Sancerre than your typical Marlborough Sauvignons, but it’s a style I love and matches perfectly with this salmon dish.

Sam Weaver, originally from Shropshire, set up the Churton vineyard in New Zealand in 1997 to create ‘terroir’-driven wines from biodynamic practices. These practices largely concentrate on following the lunar cycle to assist in the viticulture and vinifi cation processes – something Sam’s passionate about adhering to!

Alternatively tuck into Château Doisy-Daëne, Bordeaux Grand Vin Sec, Dubourdieu (£25), a cool, crisp Sauvignon brimming with peach, green apple and lime entwined with a herbal character and a drizzle of honey. There’s also a short period of oak ageing to create toasty edges combined with sweet spice.

It hails from the Sauternes sub-region of Bordeaux, famous for its dessert wine, but winemaker Denis Dubourdieu has pioneered a modern dry white here, proving these vineyards make versatile and delicious styles!

Prices subject to changes in duty. Tanners Wine Merchants have branches throughout the Welsh Borders, in Chester, Shrewsbury, Hereford, Bridgnorth and Welshpool. Tel: 01743 234500. www.tanners-wines.co.uk


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