Evening Star Salmon in a Sauce of Scotch and Shiitake

By • May 10, 2010 • 15 Comments

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Author Notes: This is a 4 star luxury dish that I created for a dinner party based on a Scottish theme. My approach was to add a different Scotch whiskey to each dish, and this salmon was the star of the evening, with people asking for the recipe for weeks after the event. Use a Scotch that you love to drink, because the flavor will permeate the dish most delightfully. The sauce can be prepared ahead of time, and the fish can be prepared up to the point of popping it under the broiler up to an hour in advance, making this a super-easy party dish. - Abra BennettAbra Bennett

Food52 Review: Scotch and salmon are a great match and this sauce doesn't hold back on the Scotch, so be sure to use a good one to get the most out of this rich sauce. The salmon gets lovely caramelized edges from the honey and the lemon adds a nice fresh touch. - StephanieThe Editors

Serves 4

  • 4 salmon fillets, preferably wild salmon
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 2 cups shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup Scotch, the best you can afford
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 5 tablespoons butter, divided use
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Saute shallots and shiitakes in 3 T of the butter over medium-high heat until they release their liquid, it evaporates, and they are golden and slightly crisp. Stir in the cream, Scotch, parsley, and a bit of salt and pepper and simmer gently to reduce while you prepare the salmon.
  2. Remove any pin bones from the salmon. Rub coriander, salt and pepper gently into the salmon. Melt the remaining butter. Remove from heat and add the honey and lemon juice to the butter. Brush this mixture over the salmon. Place the salmon on a foil-lined broiler pan, skin side down, and broil just until done, without turning over, about 6-8 minutes.
  3. Spoon the sauce over fillets. Serve this with a very simple side dish, sugar snap peas are nice, to let the salmon take center stage. And you'll need a good bread for mopping up the sauce, because people won't want to leave a drop on their plates.
Jump to Comments (15)

Tags: dinner party

Comments (15) Questions (0)

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12 months ago Debora Morgan

One of the things I love about this recipe is that it's simple to prepare while still being impressive (not to mention delicious). I've always used Irish whiskey instead of scotch, specifically Tullamore Dew because I like how it tastes (don't be too upset with me haha!). I'd love to try it the proper way one day, but we always seem to have Irish whiskey on hand.

Junechamp

over 4 years ago ChefJune

June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I'd say Laphroig would be too peaty. and probably the best Scotch for this sauce would be a blended Scotch, like Chivas Regal or Dewars.

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over 4 years ago TinaMiB

This is a great recipe. I plan to use the salt, pepper, ground coriander with the butter, honey, lemon glaze on several other recipes with sauce. The glaze is so good, I want to eat the salmon without the sauce.

Thanks!

Rays-2

over 4 years ago Abra Bennett

Good point, monkeymom. I like to cut the salmon into individual portions before cooking, so that you get a nice clean edge and a better presentation. I'd say a 5-6 oz portion will make most people happy.

Monkeys

over 4 years ago monkeymom

Hi Abra, How big should the salmon fillets be?

Rays-2

over 4 years ago Abra Bennett

Lizthechef, and anyone else,of course I'd love feedback!

Junechamp

over 4 years ago ChefJune

June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Omigosh, does this sound outrageous! I will be trying it soon. ;)

Monkeys

over 4 years ago monkeymom

Wow! Can't wait to try this!

Winnie100

over 4 years ago WinnieAb

This looks incredibly fantastic!

Rays-2

over 4 years ago Abra Bennett

Oh dear, I'm sorry. The dinner was before I moved to France, and I wiped the menu from my hard drive, never imagining that I'd need it again. I do remember that there was even Scotch in the salad dressing, and a bread pudding with a Scotch sauce, and a soup of some seafood with Scotch, and some lamb appetizer brochettes with a Scotch marinade and glaze, but the details are sadly lost to history. This was the recipe really worth keeping though, and that's why it survived two international moves.

I do think Laphroaig would be too peaty, personally. I don't think the salmon would survive the intense and somewhat medicinal flavors it has.

Newliztoqueicon-2

over 4 years ago Lizthechef

I forgive you - your recipe has me enchanted as it is - want feedback after the weekend? I am definitely down to test it informally - this is a winner.

Profilepic

over 4 years ago Rivka

Um, yes. Yes, yes, yes. This looks wonderful!

Newliztoqueicon-2

over 4 years ago Lizthechef

My McPherson roots have me jumping with joy over your delicious-sounding recipe. Just let me at the Famous Grouse and I will give this a go this weekend. Thumbs up!

Newliztoqueicon-2

over 4 years ago Lizthechef

ps I would love to know the rest of your dinner party dishes for the Scottish theme...

Landing

over 4 years ago saenyc

That sounds like one heck of a dinner party! Wonder if a Laphroig would be too peaty....