On my recent trip to Minneapolis, I had the pleasure of visiting my friend S., who I haven't seen in roughly 3 years. Yet again, I was reminded how long absences can make you forget how much you miss someone. Between reminiscing, finding out how many people she and my husband know mutually, and a lot of laughter, we had a wonderfully relaxing afternoon.
Somewhere in our conversation, between mouthfuls of a pretty darn good cinnamon bun, she mentioned that a friend of hers had given her some salmon from his recent Alaskan fishing trip, and that she had no idea what to do with it... and then she asked me if I had any ideas. I know. OF COURSE I had ideas, the biggest one being that I should come over the next night and cook it. When S. readily agreed, my heart did a little happy jig, River Dance style. Oh yes, my friends. This poor fish-loving girl who's been as landlocked as it gets for the past 2 years just got her hands on some incredibly fresh salmon.
To showcase the Alaskan-y freshness of the salmon, I opted to poach it and serve it with an Irish butter sauce. I went the traditional white wine and aromatics route for my poaching liquid, but there are dozens of variations you could use. With a simple saute of spinach, criminis, shallots, and tomato on the side, this proved a very delicious yet simple meal, and it was a pleasure to prepare with S. and to enjoy with her and my husband.
Irish Butter Sauce
2 egg yolks (straight off the farm, if you can help it)
2 teaspoons cold water
1 stick (1/2 C) butter, diced*
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Whisk egg yolks and water together in a small stainless steel bowl, then place the bowl over a pot of simmering water (basically, a double boiler). Immediately add a couple pieces of butter and whisk until melted. Continue to add butter a few pieces at a time until and whisk until all butter is melted. Add lemon juice.
*If you use unsalted butter, you will want to add a pinch or two of salt.
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