Olive Oil Poached Salmon with Pickled Zucchini and Yellow Squash

Olive Oil Poached Salmon with Pickled Zucchini and Yellow Squash

Mourad Lahlou

Mourad Lahlou

October 23rd, 2017

https://simplefeast.com/chefscatalog

Olive Oil Poached Salmon with Pickled Zucchini and Yellow Squash

Serves 4
4 hours 10 minutes total time
75 minutes active time
Challenge Yourself

Slowly poaching fish in oil is a cool cheffy technique that’s not very hard to do and produces perfectly cooked fish with a velvety texture. With salmon, I do a quick salt-curing step before poaching, which adds a surprising amount of flavor and helps preserve the bright red color of the fish.

Cooking Note: Purchase a large center cut fillet for even portions. Cut into 4 pieces (slice through the center then turn fish perpendicular and slice again for rectangles). The poaching oil can be strained and refrigerated for salmon poaching (or another fish) again within 3 weeks.

Ingredients
Salmon
Four 3-ounce salmon fillets, skin and pin bones removed
1 lemon
1 small thyme sprig
3 garlic cloves, smashed
4 cups extra-virgin olive oil

Pickled Zucchini and Squash
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon water½ teaspoon Marash pepper
2 small zucchini
1 small yellow squash
1 ½ cups kosher salt
1 dried chile de arbol, broken into small pieces
1 ½ tablespoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest
16 medium basil leaves, cut into chiffonade
2 tablespoons diced preserved lemons, optional
Maldon salt, optional

Directions
For the salmon: First, select a pan just large enough to submerge the salmon in a single layer. The salmon must be completely submerged in oil. Put the salmon in the pan. Measure water in a large liquid measuring cup and then add to the pan to determine the amount of oil that will be needed to submerge the salmon fillets. Remove the salmon and dry on paper towels. Pour out the water and dry out the pan.

Using a vegetable peeler, peel the zest off the lemon in lengthwise strips. Then, with a paring knife, scrape off any white pith from inside the strips leaving just strips of peel. Put the zest strips, thyme, garlic, and oil in the chosen pan.

Bring the oil to 120˚F over low heat. It will take about 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the herbs sit in the warm oil for at least 1 hour or up to 2 hours.

Take the salmon out of the refrigerator about 45 minutes before poaching to bring to room temperature.

Meanwhile for the pickled zucchini and squash: whisk the vinegar, sugar, water, and Marash pepper together until the sugar dissolves. Thinly slice the zucchini and yellow squash lengthwise on a mandolin. Reserve the yellow squash. Toss the zucchini in the pickling liquid and let sit at room temperature while poaching the salmon. Toss occasionally.

Combine the salt, chile de arbol and coriander, in a square baking dish. Using a rasp grater, grate the zest into the dish. Add the fish and toss gently to coat the fish. Let sit at room temperature for 5 minutes.

Remove the salmon fillets from the salt. Gently brush away the excess salt and soak in a bowl of cold tap water for 15 minutes, at room temperature.

Remove from the water and blot the salmon well to dry with paper towels.

Bring the oil back to 120˚F and turn off the heat. Add the salmon, resting the fillets on the pieces of zest strips, thyme, and garlic, so the salmon does not touch the bottom of the pan. (You can use your hands to position the salmon.) Check the temperature often, and poach the salmon at 110˚F, adjusting the heat as necessary to maintain the temperature. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes; 12 minutes for rare and 15 for a bit more done.

The salmon will look raw, but will be cooked rare. The salmon will be very fragile. Carefully, using a thin spatula, remove the salmon from the oil and drain on a cooling rack set over a baking sheet before serving.

Toss the yellow squash with the pickled zucchini, using your hands if necessary to gently separate the ribbons. Remove from the pickling liquid and divide between the serving dishes. Sprinkle with the basil and the preserved lemon, if using. If you aren’t using the preserved lemons, sprinkle with a little Maldon. Set a salmon fillet on each plate and serve.

This recipe is part of Simple Feast, an app that hosts an amazing community of Chefs and their delicious recipes. To view more recipes go to Simple Feast.

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Ingredients

  • Four 3-ounce salmon fillets, skin and pin bones removed
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 small thyme sprig
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 4 cups extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • ½ teaspoon Marash pepper
  • 2 small zucchini
  • 1 small yellow squash
  • 1 ½ cups kosher salt
  • 1 dried chile de arbol, broken into small pieces
  • 1 ½ tablespoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest
  • 16 medium basil leaves, cut into chiffonade
  • 2 tablespoons diced preserved lemons, optional
  • Maldon salt, optional
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