Poached Salmon with Beans + Basil Mayonnaise

June  3, 2014

Every week, Caroline Wright creates simple, civilized recipes for Food52 that feed four -- for under $20, in under 20 minutes.

Today: Keep your dinner routine calm and easy with this summer meal.

Poached Salmon on Food52

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As the days grow warmer, my palette gets simpler -- I want to eat clean flavors, which means to me that I crave the taste of vegetables as they are from the garden and little else. This meal is exactly that: gently poached salmon alongside steamed green beans and potatoes and a dab of homemade mayonnaise. Preparing the meal feels equally quiet and wholesome; making the sauce is as easy as pulling out a solitary bowl and whisk for a single egg and a slow drizzle of oil. If salmon is too expensive in your market, opt for boneless skinless chicken breasts to poach -- they, too, work well with gentle cooking, clean vegetables, and herb-scented mayonnaise.

Poached Salmon with Beans + Basil Mayonnaise

Serves 4

1/2 cup white wine
1 salmon fillet (about 12 ounces)
1/2 lemon, sliced plus 1 tablespoon juice
2 basil sprigs plus 1/4 cup leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound trimmed green beans
4 medium new potatoes, quartered
1 large egg yolk
1/2 cup olive oil

See full recipe (and save and print it) here.


As a freelance food writer and cook, I first wrote this style of recipe as a column on my blog, The Wright Recipes, as an excuse to cook good food for my friends in a quick and simple way. 

Twenty-Dollar, Twenty-Minute™ Meals grew into a cookbook that was published by Workman in May 2013. The recipes found here are original, made especially for Food52 to once again celebrate simple food with friends.

Photo by Caroline Wright


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Before her diagnosis, Caroline wrote a book on cakes called Cake Magic!. She started developing a birthday cake using her gluten-free mix found in that book. Check out other recipes she’s developing for her new life—and the stories behind them—on her blog, The Wright Recipes. Her next book, Soup Club, is a collection of recipes she made for her underground soup club of vegan and grain-free soups she delivers every week to friends throughout Seattle's rainy winter.

1 Comment

AntoniaJames June 3, 2014
Alas, you can't get salmon for four anywhere around here for less than $20, just for the fish. Great recipe/dinner, though. I definitely plan to make it for my next salmon splurge. (Would love to see more recipes for more reasonably priced fish.) ;o)