French, Sauces, Seafood

Rick Stein’s Escalopes of Salmon with a Champagne and Chive sauce

Serves: 4

Got you at Champagne right?

Classic Rick Stein at his best, Nat and I served this at a lunch with our parents and it was a homerun; ditto the meeting of parents.

Apart from the delicacy and taste of this recipe, best is that you can make most of the sauce in advance, giving plenty of opportunity to fend off the continual barrage of humiliating stories being gleefully shot across your bows by parents:

“I remember when Robert wrote off a car…”

“Ha, that’s nothing, I remember when Natalie wrote of a yacht…”

“Tiny compared to when Robert…”

Die.

750gm salmon fillet
2 tbsp sunflower oil
Salt

Champagne and chive sauce

30g unsalted butter
1 French shallot, finely chopped
100ml champagne + 1tbsp
600ml fish stock
½ tsp caster sugar
50ml double cream
2 tsp chopped chives

Method

  1. Cut the salmon fillet into 12 escalopes; slices length ways, around half a centimeter thick. Brush each one with oil, season with a little salt and lay on a slightly oiled tray.
  2. Melt 10gm of the butter in a medium-sized saucepan. Add 1 finely chopped shallot and cook gently without colouring, until soft. Add 100ml of champagne and boil for 2 minutes. Add the fish stock and the sugar and boil rapidly until reduced by three-quarters. Add the double cream, bring back to the boil and then simmer until it has reached a good sauce consistency.
  3. Keep warm (whilst defending your reputation).
  4. Whisk together another 50ml double cream with 1 tbsp champagne and the chives until it forms soft peaks.
  5. When you are ready to serve, pre-heat the grill to high and bring the sauce back to the boil, whisk in 20gm butter, then the whipped cream mixture.
  6. Grill (or pan fry) the salmon for 30 seconds per side until just firm.
  7. Overlap the escalopes in a center of each warmed plate and pour the sauce around. Sprinkle with a few chopped chives and serve immediately while the sauce is still foaming.
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