Recipes from My Kitchen

Cheers, to Gordon Ramsay – you make a good dish.

on February 24, 2016

I stumbled on an episode of some kind of Master Chef show the other day (well, what really drew me in were the celebrity couples competing to make the better cupcake).  Gordon Ramsay, he-who-yells-for-every-occasion, was the judge in this particular contest and it was fairly entertaining.  After celebrity couples, two super models squared off (who knew Gigi Hadid was a burger connoisseur?), then former winner-Adults vs. former winner-Kids.  This.  This is what really captivated me.  I really like cooking shows if they provide the recipe (or I can Google it), and this one was searchable.  The teams were competing to make one of Gordon’s signature dishes – Salmon en Croute.   And I just knew I had to make it.

And tonight, I did.

And, I ate entirely too much of it (considering the ingredients).

And, I’m not sorry.

This dish is a crowd WOW-er.  I would highly recommend it if you are going to have company over.  Presentation is key, the dish is beautiful, and would look great next to some asparagus.  We are under a tornado warning, so I skipped the store and just ate the fish.   Overall the dish is not hard to make – and it looks super fancy.  You just need to do your prepping in a timely manner, and have a little arm-strength when making the sauce, but otherwise it’s a fairly simple recipe.  (Shh, don’t tell your dinner guests – just let them be impressed.)  Here is where I got the recipe



so you can read over that for the details – I’ll just go over the highlights.

Fist step – thaw out the puff pastry.  This takes about 30 min at room temperature to be pliable enough, and I’ve learned (the hard way) you can’t rush this.  Once it’s thawed out, roll it out a little thinner so there’s enough to cover the fish.







For this dish, you need two pieces of salmon, fairly equal size.  The first step is combine softened butter, dill, basil, and lemon zest (or juice, if you’re lemon-less) to make a paste; you’ll spread this on one of the fillets.  On the other, dijon mustard.



In case you don’t have dill – and I haven’t grown any for a while, so I don’t have any fresh or frozen dill handy – these squeeze bottles are *great* to have on hand.  I also usually keep one in lemongrass and ginger, but they make many types of herbs.  They’re great when you just need a little flavor in a sauce, they impart a very genuine flavor (in my opinion).



When the boneless/skinless fillets are cut, one end will usually be thicker than the other.  Since you are going to put these pieces of fish on top of each other, you’ll need to put them head-to-foot so that they are similar in thickness across the stack.


The fish are on a paper towel, as I patted them dry before adding the topping

Put the fish stack on the rolled-out puff pastry and wrap it up, placing it seam-side down on a baking sheet, then chill in the fridge for a few minutes.   When you’re ready to bake, make a few crisscrosses on the pastry sheet with a knife and brush with an egg wash.

Doesn't it just look pretty?

Doesn’t it just look pretty?

Bake the fish 20 minutes or so, until it’s cooked all the way through (I think I baked these about 22 minutes).  When it’s done, transfer to a cutting board and let it rest for a few minutes.  While it rests, make the Hollandaise.  This is where your trips to the gym will pay off, unless you’re using a hand mixer (c’mon now, don’t cheat, make it the right way!) your arm will get very tired of whisking.  But, it’s so worth it in the end.  There’s no real trick, other than a little steam heat and time.  The directions (in this recipe) say don’t put the whisking pot directly into the hot water (steam bath), as it will cook the eggs, but my whisking pot was really thick-walled, so I did touch-and-go in the hot water to help the process along.  You’ll know it’s done when it stops being foamy (like whipped eggs) and starts looking thick like a gravy.


Beautiful Hollandaise. Add a pinch of cayenne to give it some zip!









By now, your salmon should be cooled (I had extra puff pastry from where I wrapped the fish, why not bake it, too, amiright?), slice it open and serve with the Hollandaise drizzled over it.  Your guests will be impressed with your kitchen skills (even though it really is just the basics) and your dish will be the talk of dinner.










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