Wild King Salmon with Black Truffle Potatoes and Chive Emulsion

Chef Maxwell garnishes this dish with a nest of fried potato strands. An alternative is to sprinkle it with fresh chives.

Wine recommendations: Panther Creek 1997 Reserve Pinot Noir (Oregon), Peconic Bay 1998 Chardonnay (North Fork of Long Island).

  • For the potatoesv
  • 2 Russet or Idaho potatoes, peeled and cut in thirds
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon canned truffle pieces
  • 1 teaspoon truffle oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • For the chive emulsion
  • 6 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh chives
  • 2 white mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 teaspoon white or black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 1/2 tablespoon or 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1/8 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) chilled butter, cubed
  • For the salmon
  • 4 (6-ounce) salmon fillets, or tournedos (rounds)
  • 1 1/3 tablespoons melted butter
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Chopped fresh chives

To make potatoes, place them into a pan of salted water set over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium and simmer for about 25 minutes, or until soft. Meanwhile, in another saucepan, melt 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter in heavy cream. When potatoes are soft, drain and mash with a fork or potato masher, slowly adding cream and butter mixture. (Don’t use a food processor or potatoes will be gummy.) Mix in truffle pieces and truffle oil, season with salt and pepper to taste and keep warm.

For the chive emulsion, prepare a bowl of ice water. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add chives and boil for 30 seconds. Drain chives and immediately plunge them into ice water for 30 seconds to set color. Drain, purée in a food processor and set aside.

Combine mushrooms, thyme, peppercorns, bay leaf, lemon juice, vinegar and wine in a nonreactive saucepan and heat over medium-high heat until reduced in volume to 1/8 cup. Stir in cream, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 3 minutes. While mixture is simmering, add 1 1/2 cups butter, 1 cube at a time, allowing each to melt before adding the next. Season with salt and pepper and strain. Keep warm.

To cook the salmon, heat oven to 350F. Brush salmon with butter and season with salt and pepper. In an oven-proof pan set on the stove over medium heat, heat vegetable oil until it ripples. Place salmon into pan in a single layer and sear for 2 minutes, or until golden; turn and sear the other side. Place pan in oven and bake for about 8 minutes or until fish is opaque. Do not overcook.

To serve, place a mound of potato in the center of each of 4 plates. Top each with a salmon round. Whisk chive purée into strained butter sauce and drizzle around edge of plate. Garnish with chopped chives and serve immediately.

Published on June 23, 2010