My English Friend Maggie’s Favorite Simple Supper: Poached Salmon with Dijon Dill Sauce, Cucumber and Dark Bread, New Potatoes with Mint

  • Yield : 4 servings plus 3 reserved for
  • Prep Time : 10m
  • Cook Time : 15m
  • Ready In : 25m
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  • 2 pounds red skinned small new potatoes
  • Coarse salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint, a handful of leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 7 (6-ounce) portions fresh Norwegian salmon fillets, individually packaged in fish department or market
  • 2 cups dry white wine
  • 2 to 3 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf, fresh or dried
  • Bouquet of fresh tarragon, dill and parsley sprigs, tied with kitchen string
  • 1 bundle fresh watercress, washed and trimmed
  • 1/2 English or seedless cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 4 slices pumpernickel bread, quartered
  • 2 cups sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons prepared Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup chopped herbs, a few sprigs each tarragon, dill and parsley


Step 1

Place potatoes in a pot and cover with water. Cover pot and bring water to a boil. Add a generous amount of coarse salt to the water, a few healthy pinches. Reduce heat to medium and boil covered until tender, about 12 minutes.

Step 2

Place salmon fillets in a large deep skillet or divide between 2 skillets if you do not have a pan large enough to accommodate all 8 portions. The additional portions will provide the cooked salmon for salmon cakes on another night. Pour wine and water into the pan so that just the very top of the salmon is exposed. Add a bay leaf and a bouquet of a few sprigs each fresh tarragon, dill and parsley to the pan and set it down into the liquid. Place the pan or pans over high heat and bring the liquid to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and cover the pan. Poach salmon for 10 minutes or, until fish is firm and opaque.

Step 3

Drain your potatoes and return them to the hot pot. Add butter to the pot and turn potatoes to coat them lightly in the butter. Sprinkle the mint and sugar over the potatoes.

Step 4

Combine sour cream with Dijon mustard and chopped herbs in a small bowl.

Step 5

Remove salmon from the cooking liquid with a thin spatula. Reserve 3 portions of the salmon and place in the refrigerator or freeze for salmon cakes meal.

Step 6

To serve, place a piece of salmon on a plate and garnish with sauce. Serve pumpernickel squares, watercress and sliced cucumber along side the fish. Add minted red potatoes to the plate and serve.

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