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There’s a time for minimalist, straightforward cooking, and a time to pull out all the stops. This recipe is decidedly in the second category.
Beurre blanc is a classic butter sauce from Brittany, France and is an ultimate sign of decadence. This tangy, velvety sauce is traditionally served with seafood in French cuisine. We thought we’d give it an even more extravagant twist by adding caviar.
The trick to creating the emulsion for this sauce is by adding the cubes of butter a few at a time. Be careful not to let the sauce come to a boil once you start adding the butter, or it can break (separate). This sauce will hold the emulsion for a short time, so it is best prepared just before serving.
This sauce is incredibly rich. To cut through the richness, we balanced the sauce out with a simple wine-poached salmon and blanched asparagus. We used CleanFish Norwegian Salmon for this recipe, but our other salmon or ChalkStream trout would also work well.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add asparagus and cook for 2-3 minutes, until just tender. Drain asparagus and set aside.
Combine wine, water, dill, shallots, lemon, and a big pinch of salt in a shallow pot or high-sided sauté pan. Bring the liquid to just below a simmer, about 160 to 180 degrees.
Add salmon pieces to the poaching liquid and cook for about 6-8 minutes, flipping the pieces over halfway through. The internal temperature of the fish should reach 145 degrees, but you can remove the pieces sooner if you like your salmon more on the medium side. Remove salmon from the liquid and set on a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
Add shallots, wine, and vinegar to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Season with a pinch of salt and white pepper. Lower heat to a simmer and cook until the liquid has reduced to about 1-2 tablespoons.
Reduce heat to low. Whisk in a couple cubes of butter to start an emulsion. Continue whisking butter (2-3 pieces at a time) into the sauce, allowing it to melt before adding more. Do not let the sauce come to a boil.
Once all the butter has been incorporated, remove sauce from heat and stir in lemon juice. Adjust seasoning to taste.
Strain sauce into a bowl. Mix caviar into the sauce, reserving some for garnish if desired.
Arrange asparagus spears and trout portions on plates. Spoon the sauce over the salmon and top with reserved caviar, if using.