Steamed Moroccan-style Salmon
Baby vegetables and a rich saffron butter sauce accompany salmon medallions which are coated in Moroccan spices and steamed in spinach leaves. Chef Danko serves this with a timbale of couscous; rice is also a good accompaniment.
- Moroccan Spice
- Cilantro - 1 sprig, stemmed and chopped
- Flat leaf parsley - 1 sprig, stemmed and chopped
- Kosher salt - 1 teaspoon
- Cumin - 1-1/2 teaspoons freshly-ground
- Hungarian Paprika - 1 teaspoon
- Saffron - 1/4 teaspoon
- Cayenne Pepper - Pinch
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 2 tablespoons
- Lemon Juice - 1-1/2 teaspoons
- Harissa - 1/2 teaspoons (alt. Tabasco sauce)
- Saffron Sauce (optional)
- Fish Stock - 1/2 cup
- Dry White Wine - 1/2 cup
- Bottled clam juice - 1/2 cup
- Shallot - 1, minced
- Thyme - 1 teaspoon fresh, minced
- Bay Leaf - 1
- Parsley - 1 sprig, stemmed and minced
- Heavy (whipping) cream - 1/2 cup
- Butter - 1/2 cup, cut into tablespoons
- Saffron - 1/4 teaspoon
- Salt - To taste
- Baby green Beans - 24
- Broccoli florets - From 1 bunch of broccoli
- Baby Brussels Sprouts - 12, outer leaves removed
- Baby Beets - 12
- Spinach - 24 large leaves, washed
- Salmon - 6 steaks
- Unsalted Butter - 2 tablespoons
- Carrot - 1 large
- Peanut Oil - 2 cups (alt. safflower oil)
- Chives - 4, minced
To make the Moroccan spice: Mix all ingredients together in a medium bowl.
To make the sauce: In a medium saucepan, combine the fish stock, wine, clam juice, shallot, thyme, bay leaf, and parsley and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until reduced by half. Remove the bay leaf. Add the cream and cook to reduce to 1/2 cup. Lower the heat and whisk in the butter, one tablespoon at a time, to make a thick sauce. Remove the pan from the heat as necessary to keep the mixture just warm enough to melt each piece of butter. Whisk in the saffron and warm the sauce for 15 seconds. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve, pressing down on the herbs to release the flavor. Stir in the salt and keep the sauce warm in a thermos until service.
To prepare the vegetables: Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Put ice water in a medium bowl. Plunge the green beans into the boiling water and cook for 30 seconds; remove and plunge into the ice water, then dry on paper towels. Plunge the broccoli into the boiling water, cook for 1 minute, remove and plunge into the ice water, then dry on paper towels. Plunge the Brussels sprouts into the boiling water, cook for 1 minute, remove and plunge into the ice water, then dry on paper towels. Finally, plunge the beets into the water, cook for 1 minute, remove and plunge into the ice water, then dry on paper towels. Slip off the skin. Set the vegetables aside and keep warm.
To prepare the salmon: Blanch the spinach leaves: plunge into boiling water for 20 seconds, lift out with a slotted spoon, and plunge into ice water. Remove and pat dry with a towel.
With a paring knife, trim the salmon steaks of skin and fat, and pick over for any bones. Each steak should result in two strips (or darne) of salmon. Coat the salmon with the spice mixture. Roll each strip into a medallion. Arrange 4 spinach leaves on a work surface, overlapping slightly. Wrap a salmon medallion with the spinach leaves. Repeat with other medallions. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Arrange the medallions on a bamboo steamer which fits over the top of the pot of water. Place the steamer over the water and cover tightly with a lid. Steam 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
To serve: Melt 1-1/2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet or saucepan and toss the green vegetables to heat. Melt the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of butter in a small skillet and toss the baby beets to heat. Heat the oil to 370 F in a deep-fryer or deep saucepan. Using a mandolin or V-slicer, shave the carrot lengthwise into very thin strips. Lightly dust with flour; shake off all visible flour. Using a slotted spoon, plunge the carrot strips into the hot oil and fry for 15 seconds; remove and drain on paper towels.
Coat each plate with sauce. Place 3 wrapped salmon medallions on each serving plate. Sprinkle with chives. Top with fried carrot strips. Divide the baby vegetables among the plates.