"After all, I don't see why I am always asking for private, individual, selfish miracles when every year there are miracles like white dogwood."
~Anne Morrow Lindbergh
SALMON FILLET PRINCESSE
~ Elegant dinner using fresh asparagus, an obvious choice for spring from The Gunflint Lodge cookbook
12-18 fresh asparagus spears
1 1/2 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. minced onion
1 1/2 Tbsp. flour
1 cup organic chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
salt & white pepper to taste
6 (7-oz.) salmon fillets
6-8 Tbsp. melted butter
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
white wine or water as needed
4-6 oz. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Trim asparagus a half inch off butt ends and discard. Line up asparagus spears so tips are even and cut spears in half. Set aside the bottom ends and blanch tips in boiling water until crispy tender, abut 3-4 minutes. Cool quickly in ice water; drain on paper towels. Refrigerate until needed.
- In heavy bottomed saucepan , melt 1 1/2 Tbsp. butter over low heat. Add onion and cover. cook over low heat until onions are transparent. Stir in flour. Cook slowly, stirring for 2 minutes without browning. Gradually whisk in chicken stock. Continue cooking slowly, whisking constantly, until mixture boils and thickens. Cut bottom ends crosswise into 1/2 inch pieces and add to thickened stock. Reduce heat to very low; simmer 10 minutes. If mixture gets too thick, thin with a little water or additional chicken stock.
- In food processor with steel knife, puree mixture. Strain through fine sieve into a clean saucepan, pressing down hard on the solids. Whisk in cream; cook over low heat until thickened and smooth. Season to taste with salt & white pepper. Keep warm while fish cooks.
- Preheat oven to 450-degrees. Spray a shallow-sided cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray. Lay salmon fillets on it with skin side down. Brush with melted butter. Season to taste with salt & black pepper. Pour a little water or white wine in pan. Bake for 3-5 minutes. Place 3 asparagus spears on top of each serving of fish; top with Parmesan cheese. Return to oven; bake an additional 3-4 minutes or until cheese is melted and salmon is done as desired. Place each serving of salmon on a warm plate; spoon asparagus cream sauce around fish. (6 servings)
WILD RICE PILAF
1 cup wild rice, cooked in chicken stock according to package directions
4 Tbsp. butter
1/4 tsp. minced garlic
1 finely chopped onion
1 small finely chopped green pepper
1/2 finely chopped red pepper
4 oz. sliced fresh mushrooms
2 Tbsp. chopped parsley
salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic, onion, green pepper, red pepper, and mushrooms. Saute until vegetables are soft. Toss vegetables with cooked wild rice and parsley. Season to taste with salt & pepper. (6-8 servings)
(Dogwood in bloom)