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Jul 3, 2017 5:00 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Short-Prep Meals For Summertime Entertaining

Poaches salmon in the poaching liquid.  JANEEN SARLIN
Jul 4, 2017 11:47 AM

Farmers markets are brimming over with Kirby cucumbers and freshly dug “new” onions. These two vegetables are the perfect base components for a refreshing healthy salad to serve this week.

Serve poached salmon fillets with a savory herbed whipped cream sauce plus new red potatoes to complete the farm-to-table menu. New potatoes and fresh herbs are in the markets too.

Summertime entertaining should not require tons of preparation, therefore you want to be efficient when you are in the kitchen. Shallow poaching accomplishes a flavorful fish in less time and with more precision.

Traditionally, I’d serve French potato salad with poached salmon, but crispy fresh dug new potatoes garnished with chopped mint and parsley is too good to resist!

Bon appétit!

Poached Salmon 
With Savory Whipped Cream(Serves 4)4, 4- to 5-ounce fillets of organic salmon, with skin onPoaching liquid:Extra virgin olive oil for coating the pan

2 shallots, finely chopped

1 small white onion, sliced

2 quarter-size slices fresh ginger, smashed

About 12 parsley stems only, tied in a bundle

1 carrot, scrubbed and sliced

1/2 teaspoon whole black pepper corns

1 cup white wine or vermouth

About 1 cup waterFor the savory cream (to make about 1 1/2 cups sauce):2/3 cup whipping cream

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon Hellmann’s mayonnaise

1 tablespoon freshly grated onion

1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger root

About 1/3 cup snipped chives

Sea salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste

Zest of 1 lemon

6 to 8 Romaine leaves, cut into chiffonade for platter

1 lemon cut into wedges for garnishTo prepare:Check the fillet of salmon for bones by running your fingers over the fish. Remove stray bones with a long-nosed pliers.

In a large non-reactive skillet over moderate-high heat, lightly coat the bottom of the pan with oil, add shallots, onion, and ginger and sauté until aromatic, about 1 minute. Add parsley stems, carrot, peppercorns, wine or vermouth, water and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to a simmer, add salmon and poach, gently spooning the hot liquid over the fillets until the fish is firm to the touch.

The fish will be pale on the edges and outer part as opposed to bright salmon color, but pink on the inside, about 5 minutes, or until the fish is done according to personal preference.

With a slotted fish spatula or large spoon, lift fish out of the poaching liquid and transfer to a platter. Let come to room temperature.

Pour the poaching liquid into a strainer set over a bowl and discard the vegetables.

Return the poaching liquid to the skillet and reduce until it becomes nearly a glaze. Taste and adjust the seasonings.

Spoon glaze over the fillets, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until serving time.

Meanwhile, whip the heavy cream until soft peaks form.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the mustard, mayonnaise, onion and ginger root and blend well.

One teaspoon at a time, gently fold the savory seasonings into the cream. Stir in salt, pepper, and lemon zest then taste and adjust the seasonings. Fold in chives and refrigerate until serving time.To serve: Scatter sliced romaine on the platter, arrange poached salmon on top, garnish the platter with lemon, spoon a dollop of savory cream on the salmon and pass the remaining sauce at the table.Kirby Cucumber Salad(Serves 4)8 to 10 Kirby cucumbers, scrubbed

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Pinch of sugar

2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar (total)

1 medium “new” onion, halved and thinly sliced (can be red or white onion)

1 teaspoon pickled ginger (sushi ginger), cut into thin strips

3 to 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Splash sesame oil, to taste

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

1/2 bunch fresh dill, choppedTo prepare:Scrub cucumbers well, with sharp vegetable peeler, peel stripes around the cucumber.

With a benriner or mandolin, cut cucumbers into thin slices and transfer to a mixing bowl.

Sprinkle salt, sugar, and 1 tablespoon vinegar over cucumbers, toss and steep for 15 minutes. Drain off accumulated liquid in the bottom of the bowl. Do not rinse, pat the cucumbers dry with paper towels and transfer to a bowl. Add onion and ginger to cucumbers and toss well.

Whisk together olive oil, sesame oil, remaining vinegar together and season with black pepper. Drizzle over the vegetables, toss to mix, taste and adjust the seasonings. Can be done in advance, refrigerate until serving time.

Stir dill into the salad just before serving.Crispy Baked 
New Red Potatoes(Serves 4)8 to 10 new red potatoes (about 2 pounds), scrubbed

About 1/4 cup avocado or extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Few fresh spearmint leaves, chopped (according to taste)

10-15 flat leaf parsley leaves, choppedTo prepare:Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Lightly film the bottom of a baking dish that will accommodate all the potatoes in one layer with oil.

Peel a circle around the center of each new potato, rinse, and shake off excess water, pat dry with paper towels. Add potatoes to the baking dish and drizzle oil over them. Place in the oven and bake until the potatoes are browned and crispy on the outside and done to the point of a fork, about 20 to 30 minutes. The cooking time will depend on the size of the potatoes.

Season the potatoes with salt and pepper, transfer to a serving dish and toss with chopped mint and parsley.

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