Poached Side of Salmon with Asparagus and Brown Shrimps

This beautifully-presented salmon dish as seen on Mary's Berry's BBC series, Classic, is a brilliant dinner party centrepiece.

Introduction

This is a great dish – so quick and simple to prepare, with great results. If you have a good fishmonger, who will prepare the salmon well, nicely trimmed and pin-boned, there is very little to do, except serving it up and impressing your guests.

Serves 8

Ingredients

butter, for greasing
1 small bunch of dill
1kg (2lb 3oz) side of salmon fillet, skin on
50ml (2fl oz) white wine
juice of 1 lemon
salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the dressing:
½ banana shallot, finely diced
2 tsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
150ml (5fl oz) light olive oil
1 tsp caster sugar
1 bunch of dill, chopped
To garnish:
20 asparagus tips, cut in half
100g (4oz) peeled cooked brown shrimps, patted dry
pink radishes, sliced, or pink micro herbs

Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/Gas 4. Lightly butter a large sheet of foil big enough to wrap the salmon, and place over a large roasting tin (see tip).

2. Place the dill in the centre of the foil. Season the buttered foil with salt and pepper and place the salmon on top, skin side up. Pour over the white wine and lemon juice. Bring the two long edges of the foil together and fold the edges together, scrunching them up to make a parcel and sealing the edges at the side like a Cornish pasty (see tip).

3. Place in the oven to poach for about 25 minutes until the salmon is just cooked, the flesh pale pink and opaque. Leave to rest for 10 minutes. Then carefully remove the skin, pulling off in one piece if possible (see tip). Use a palette knife to scrape off any grey fat.

4. Blanch the asparagus tips in a saucepan of boiling water for 3 minutes. Drain and refresh under cold water. Mix all of the dressing ingredients together in a jug, and season with salt and pepper.

5. Using two fish slices, carefully transfer the salmon to a serving platter. Arrange the asparagus along the length of the fish, scatter the shrimps over the top and spoon over some of the dressing. Garnish with slices of radish or micro herbs and serve at room temperature with the remaining dressing in a jug.

Cook time: 25-30 minutes plus resting.

Prepare Ahead:
Assemble the dish up to 3 hours ahead. The salmon can be poached up to 8 hours ahead and the dressing made up to a week in advance.

Mary’s Classic Tips:
* If you don’t have a roasting tin large enough for the length of the piece of salmon, the grill pan makes a good alternative.
* Make sure you have a good seal around the edges of the foil parcel before baking it. This will ensure no steam escapes out of the sides, and the fish will cook beautifully inside.
* It is so much easier to remove the skin from the salmon while it is still warm; if the salmon cools down too much, the skin will stick firmly to the flesh and be tricky to remove.

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