Saffron Blanquette of Salmon

This rich and quickly made dish is perfect served with new potatoes and either just a green salad or some early summer green vegetables such as broad beans, peas or French beans. Ask your fishmonger to fillet and skin the salmon for you.

Ingredients

  • 450 ml/¾ pint fish or chicken stock
  • 2 generous pinches saffron strands
  • 300 ml/½ pint double cream
  • 50 g/2 oz butter
  • 2 teaspoons pink peppercorns, roughly crushed
  • 40 g/ oz plain flour
  • 1.1-1.25 kg/2½-2¾ lb tail piece of salmon, filleted and skinned
  • good bunch fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • salt
  • black pepper

Method

Put the stock into a saucepan, add the saffron strands and bring up to bubbling. Remove from the heat and leave for 10 minutes, then stir in the double cream.

Put the butter and pink peppercorns in a fairly large heatproof casserole over a gentle heat until the butter has melted. Remove from the heat and stir in the flour until smooth. Return the pan to the heat, gradually stir in the stock and cream mixture and bring to the boil, stirring all the time. Bubble, still stirring, for 2-3 minutes, until thickened and smooth. Cover and simmer very gently for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, cut the salmon into 4cm/1½in chunks and chop the dill.

Stir the lemon juice slowly into the simmering sauce and season to taste with salt and black pepper. Drop in the pieces of salmon, cover with the lid again and simmer gently for another 5-8 minutes or until the salmon is just cooked through but still slightly dark pink in the centre. Stir in the chopped dill and serve as soon as possible.

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