This slow-cooked salmon and asparagus recipe actually comes together quickly, and is a well-balanced, delicious, hearty full spring meal!
Growing up and currently living in the Pacific Northwest, I have a mad passion for seafood. I was raised in the rivers and lakes that feed into the mighty Pacific, rising early before the sun to go fishing with my mom and dad, uncles, and cousins. Seafood has always been a big part of my diet, and I can't ever imagine living anywhere landlocked, without immediate access to the freshest seafood possible.
Salmon, in particular, is one of my favorite fishes to cook with. There's just nothing like tender, pink Pacific Coast salmon paired with a heaping pile of vegetables, like asparagus, rice, or mashed cauliflower.
New Salmon Cookbook
Recently, I was delighted to receive Diane Morgan's latest cookbook, SALMON: Everything You Need to Know + 45 Recipes.
The photos are stunning (which is honestly my #1 criteria for buying cookbooks; we eat with our eyes first!); the information shared about how to select salmon, prepare, and store salmon is priceless; and the recipes are diverse and mouthwatering.
Slow-Cooked Salmon and Asparagus
The first recipe I decided to try to make from her new cookbook was the Slow-Cooked Salmon and Asparagus recipe. I chose this one because she mentions in the description that, if you do a little prep ahead of time, this dish can be completed in about 30 minutes. Plus, I had all of the ingredients in my fridge except for the salmon.
Start with center-cut salmon fillets (be sure they are de-boned with skin off), season, and slow-cook in the oven on a low temperature for just about 15 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, while the salmon is cooking in the oven, you'll need a frying pan or large sauté pan to cook the carrots and a large saucepan to cook the asparagus.
Eventually, you add butter to the frying pan (aww yeah, butter!), toss in the peas and the asparagus and let the vegetables soak up the aromatic and now emulsified buttery wine sauce. It's a beautiful co-mingling of spring happiness in a pan.
Once the salmon is done, you simply plate all ingredients together. So simple, right?
So simple, and yet, so elegant and beautiful.
Here's a shot of my finished plate next to a photo of the recipe in her cookbook.
I adore how colorful and bright this plate is, and how the tenderness of the salmon is complimented by the slight crunch of the cooked spring vegetables.
The recipe I am posting below is an adaptation of the recipe in Diane Morgan's cookbook. Her recipe calls for leeks, which I did not have on hand and forgot to buy at the store, so I left those out. It also is a recipe portioned out for four people, and I adapted that to suit 2 people for an easy and elegant weeknight meal at home.
Slow Cooked Salmon and Asparagus
- 2 center-cut salmon fillets with the skin and pin bones removed
- extra-virgin olive oil
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- ¾ cup dry white wine
- ¼ cup water
- 8-10 petite carrots peeled with tops trimmed
- 8-10 asparagus spears as thin as you can find them, with ends cut off
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- ½ cup fresh or frozen peas thaw frozen peas in hot water and drain
- ½ tablespoon fresh mint leaves roughly torn or chopped
- Remove salmon from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior to cooking and bring to room temperature. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Pat dry with paper towels, then lightly rub olive oil over both sides of each salmon fillet and then salt and pepper.
- Place salmon fillets on top of the prepared baking sheet and bake in the oven on the center rack for about 15-20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prep a large frying pan over medium-high heat, add the wine and water, and bring to a low boil. Add the carrots and lightly season with salt (about ¼ teaspoon). Once the water is boiling, turn the heat down to medium and simmer until the carrots are slightly tender but still have a touch of crispness, which takes about 12-15 minutes.
- While the carrots are cooking, prepare a large saucepan with water, lightly salt with about ¼ teaspoon of salt, and bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, add the asparagus, lower heat to low-medium, and simmer for about 3-5 minutes. Asparagus should be similar to the firmness of the carrots: tender, but with still a bit of crispness as you crunch into them. Drain and add to a colander filled with ice to stop the cooking. This will also help the asparagus keep its bright green sheen.
- When carrots are just tender, remove from heat and stir in the butter, in about 1-2 tablespoon chunks at a time, stirring and swirling constantly to melt the butter into the wine mixture.
- Once the butter has melted, return the pan to medium heat and add the asparagus and peas. Mix all of the lovely vegetables together to coat well, and then stir in most of the mint (save just a little for garnish)
- Remove salmon from the oven once it is ready and plate, topped with vegetables and sauce. Garnish with more fresh mint.
Wouldn't you love to make this beautiful, easy, elegant salmon dinner at home?
You can check out this recipe plus more recipes and excellent salmon info and tips in Diane Morgan's newest cookbook, SALMON: Everything You Need to Know + 45 Recipes. And, I'm giving away one copy to one very lucky reader (US readers only, sorry international readers!).
Enter to win this cookbook
Simply add a blog comment below and then follow the prompts in the Rafflecopter widget box below to enter to win one copy of this cookbook! You have several chances to win! Deadline to enter is NOON FRIDAY MARCH 25, 2016. Winner must be at least 18 years old and a US resident with a physical mailing address (we cannot ship to a PO Box).
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