Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Salmon with Creamy Cucumber Sauce

A few years back during a trip to the Oregon coast with my mom and my kids, we all went out for a seafood dinner overlooking the beautiful Pacific Ocean where I had, to date, the best salmon dish I have ever ordered in a restaurant. It was perfectly pan-seared, topped with a light, cool & creamy, just ever so slightly tangy sauce with very thinly sliced cucumbers garnishing throughout.  Ever since that dinner, I have always wanted to re-create that dish. And here's what I came up with.

 For the sauce, I used a base of sour cream to which I judiciously added lemon juice, fresh chopped dill and whole grain mustard, then to finish I folded in very thinly sliced cucumber. I love the flavor of cucumber and salmon together, the two have similar flavor profiles that play very well off each other. The creamy sauce, paired with the crust of the pan seared salmon is a match made in heaven.

Salmon with Creamy Cucumber Sauces
~serves 4~

1/2 c. sour cream
1 T. fresh lemon juice
1 t. whole grain mustard
1 t. minced fresh dill
1/3 cup quartered & very thinly sliced english cucumber
salt & pepper
2 t. canola oil
4 skin on salmon portions
lemon wedges, for serving

1. Make the sauce - In a small bowl combine sour cream, lemon juice, mustard, dill and cucumber. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside while searing the salmon.

2. Sear the salmon - Pat salmon dry with paper towel and season with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a 12 inch nonstick skillet over medium-high - high heat until the oil begins to smoke. Add the salmon to the pan, presentation side down. Sear on each side. (If your salmon is less than an inch thick allow about 2 1/2 minutes per side, if they are on the thinker side 3 - 3 1/2 minutes per side.)

3. Serve the salmon topped with the sauce and lemon wedges.