Confit Alaska salmon with herby potato salad by The Gills Gals
Confiting salmon sounds fancy, but once you know how to do it you will keep coming back to it time and time again. This dish really heroes the salmon, and retains the beautiful colour of the Alaska salmon we used from Leap in this recipe.
It looks like a lot of oil, and it is, but note that it isn’t deep frying. The oil is warmed rather than heated to a higher heat allowing the salmon to slowly cook in the oil, and the oil can also be drained and saved for future recipes - we hate waste!
Ingredients (serves 2 as a main, or 4 as a starter):
400g baby potatoes
2 garlic cloves
2 sprigs of thyme
250ml olive oil
2 fillets of sockeye salmon - we used Leap which is available here
1 red chilli
2 tablespoons of mayonnaise
2 tablespoons of creme fraiche
Wash the potatoes but leave the skin on. Boil for around 20 minutes until cooked through. Drain and rinse with cold water to cool.
Heavily salt all sides of the fish, including the skin, and leave for 10 minutes. Wash the fish thoroughly and then pat dry with strong kitchen roll. The salt starts to cure the fish and removes the moisture resulting in a firmer fillet. This also makes the skin easier to remove - top tips here for doing that. Don’t discard the skin!
Fill a small pan that fits the salmon fillets snugly with the olive oil, along with two peeled garlic cloves (chopped in two to release the flavour) and a couple of sprigs of thyme.
Bring the oil to a low/medium heat (our hob has heat from 1-9 and we had it on 2 for reference) for two minutes so it infuses with the flavour.
Remove from the heat, check it isn’t too hot by placing an additional thyme sprig into the oil. If it starts to sizzle it is too hot and needs to be left for a couple of minutes.
Once you are happy with the temperature using the thyme check, carefully slip the fillets into the oil and leave for 5 minutes for rare, and up to 10 minutes to cook through.
Salt the fish skin and add a little bit of olive oil. Place on a baking tray and into an oven preheated to 220C for 8 minutes to crisp up.
Now assemble the potato salad by chopping the potatoes in half or quarters depending on their size. Finely chop the dill, parsley and chilli and add to the potatoes alongside the creme fraiche and mayonnaise (leave a little back as a final garnish). Add the zest of a lemon and squeeze half of the lemon to get some of the juice to add some extra acidity. Mix well and season to taste.
Remove the salmon fillet and place on kitchen roll to drain any excess oil.
Place the potato salad on the plate, and flake the salmon across the top. Alternatively if serving as a main you can serve the fillets whole. Garnish with your extra dill, parsley and chilli and rest the salmon skin on the side.