Poached salmon with potato, leek and watercress dauphinoise

4
2 hours

Ingredients

Poached salmon fillets

  • 4 salmon fillets, each weighing 180-200g
  • 1 banana shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1l fish stock
  • 3 sprigs of dill
  • 10 black peppercorns

Sauce (optional)

  • 2 sprigs of dill
  • 100g of créme fraiche

Watercress dauphinoise

  • 800g of Maris Piper potatoes, thinly sliced on a mandoline
  • 2 leeks, thinly sliced
  • 100g of watercress, rinsed and roughly chopped
  • 500ml of milk, semi-skimmed is fine
  • 50g of Gruyère
  • salt
  • pepper
  • olive oil

To serve

  • pea shoots

Method

1
First, preheat the oven to 160°C/gas mark 3
2
Boil some water in a saucepan on the hob and plunge the chopped watercress in for just a minute, or until the water comes back to the boil. Drain and leave to cool
3
Meanwhile, add a splash of olive oil to a frying pan and place on the hob over a medium heat. Add the leeks and slowly cook down until they become soft and sweet
4
Place the milk in a large bowl and add about 700g of the potato slices, along with the watercress. Mix together
5
Take a rectangular baking dish and very lightly oil the bottom and sides. Evenly add the slices of potato, layering up as you go through. When you are roughly halfway through, add a layer of the leeks and then continue until you have used them all up
6
Pour over any remaining milk, then with the remaining ‘clean’ potatoes, add a final layer. Press everything down and place in the oven for 50 minutes, until the top starts to crisp up
7
After that time, add the sprinkling of Gruyère and bake for a further 10 minutes, until it’s bubbled up and browned a touch
8
You can do this all in advance if you like, with the benefit of cooling down, covering with foil and pressing overnight in the fridge by placing a tray with some tins on top. This helps to compress the dauphinoise. Just reheat for 25 minutes or so before serving
9
To make the accompanying salmon, place all of your aromatics in a wide saucepan and fill with about a litre of water. Bring gently to a simmer and leave to cook for 10 minutes. Then place in the salmon and lightly poach them for 5 to 6 minutes, until they are just done. Lift out and keep in warm in foil while you make the sauce
10
Finish by pouring the remaining cooking liquor into a saucepan through a sieve to catch the aromatics. Quickly reduce on the hob by half then add the créme fraiche and stir through. The sauce will be quite light
11
Plate up with a slice of the dauphinoise, a fillet of salmon sat jauntily to the side, a drizzle of sauce and some pea shoots for colour