Pan-fried salmon with a warm salad of beetroot, potato, black olives and basil pistou

31 July 2008
Pan-fried salmon with a warm salad of beetroot, potato, black olives and basil pistou

(Serves two)

For the basil pistou
1 bunch basil
1 clove garlic
100ml extra virgin olive oil
50g pine kernels

For the remaining dish
2 large beetroots, cooked
60g pitted black olives
80g salad potatoes, precooked
2tbs olive oil
2 x 150g middle cut of salmon
Salt and pepper
5g butter
20g cultivated dandelion leaves
30g beetroot leaves (or mixed salad)


For the pistou, pick the basil leaves away from the stalks and blanch in boiling salted water for 30 seconds. Take out and refresh. Squeeze the excess water from the basil and place in a blender. Crush the garlic and add to the basil with the oil and pine kernels. Blend all together for one minute and set aside.

Chop the beetroot and the black olives. Cut the potatoes into quarters. Reserve, but keep separate.

Take a hot non-stick pan and add the oil. Sear the salmon, and as it starts to cook baste continuously with the oil. The fish will take about four minutes to cook like this. Season and remove the fish.

Add the vegetable mix to the pan in its place. Toss with the butter for about two minutes. Spoon out on to kitchen paper to take away the excess fat. Spread some of the pistou on the base of the plate. Add the vegetable mix with the cultivated dandelion leaves (wild leaves are too bitter at this time of year) and beetroot leaves on top. Place the fish on top of the whole lot and serve.

Lee Bennett, head chef, Le Pont de la Tour, London

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