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Steamed Salmon Steaks

With Chardonnay Butter Sauce

What better way to celebrate than with beautiful salmon steaks covered in a rich butter sauce. The fish can be either baked or steamed.


Fish Tip: With salmon, the fat content of the flesh is considered the indicator of table quality and flavor, much as with beefsteak—with higher fat content being better. With fish, fat content is related to how far the fish have to swim in their annual breeding cycle. Alaskan Copper River salmon are one of the most famous and delicious salmon, because the Copper River with its tributaries is one of the longest river systems in Alaska.

Fish Tip: With salmon, the fat content of the flesh is considered the indicator of table quality and flavor, much as with beefsteak—with higher fat content being better. With fish, fat content is related to how far the fish have to swim in their annual breeding cycle. Alaskan Copper River salmon are one of the most famous and delicious salmon, because the Copper River with its tributaries is one of the longest river systems in Alaska.

To serve four . . .
cut-up carrot, celery, and onion, about 1 c. each to enhance the flavors
a few sprigs fresh tarragon, parsley or dill
About 1 gallon water, depending on size of pot. The water should not touch the fish.
5 oz. salmon steak per serving

» To steam the steaks: In a heavy pot with a steaming platform and a tight lid, bring the water, vegetables, and herbs to a boil.
» Lower the fish onto the rack and steam on high for 5 to 7 minutes.
» Place the fish on a serving plate, spoon the sauce over the steaks and garnish with lemon or chopped fresh 
parsley.
» Or, to bake the steaks: Lightly oil a baking dish and add the steaks, surrounding them with the vegetables.
» Sprinkle the herbs over everything. Add a splash of white wine here and there, then bake for about 8 to 10 minutes at 400°F.


SalmonSteamed

>>Cook’s Tip: Steaming requires thorough and immediate immersion into hot mist. Begin with the pot full of steam. The steaming vessel needs to be high and wide so that steam can circulate around the food. Since food doesn’t contact any other medium when steamed, 
flavors are accentuated; therefore, using fish of fine quality is important. Keep cooking times as short as possible. Don’t cook the soul out of the fish.

Chardonnay butter sauce . . .

  • 1 c. Chardonnay wine
  • 1 c. white wine vinegar
  • 1/3 c. chopped shallots
  • 1/8 inch of vanilla bean (at most)
  • salt and white pepper
  • 8 oz. butter

» Bring the ingredients except the butter to a boil and reduce to 2 1⁄2 tablespoons. Strain, and return the reduced mixture to a heavy pot. Over low heat, slowly whisk in 8 ounces of cold butter one ounce at a time, whisking constantly until the mixture is smooth and emulsified. Season with salt and pepper.

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