|grilled salmon with spring vegetables|
As a child I was revolted and fascinated by broad beans as there was something rather repellent about the dead man's fingers texture of the skins. Eating them without the skins was something of a revelation - you can really taste their nutty sweetness. Since then I have never looked back, despite the faff of having to fiddle around with them!
If you are using the early-season broad beans, you won't have to remove their skins. However, if you are using older or frozen beans then you should really remove the skins to get the full benefit of their flavour.
Skill level: Easy
4 x salmon fillets
8 x asparagus spears
100g shelled broad beans
150ml crème fraîche
salt and freshly ground black pepper
new potato salad
rocket leaves, to serve
cherry tomatoes, quartered, to serve
- Trim the woody end off the asparagus. An easy way to do this is hold an asparagus spear with both hands. (Make sure you don't hold the delicate tip too hard). Holding the other end bend to find the spear's breaking point. The spear will snap and you will be left with one end with the tip and a smaller bit which is the woody and inedible bit.
- Cook the asparagus in a little salted boiling water for 4 minutes. (It is better to undercook the vegetables as they should retain a little "bite"). Drain and put in a bowl of very cold water to halt the cooking process. Drain and cut the asparagus into 2 centimetre lengths.
- Pod the broad beans. Steam them either in lightly boiling water or in the microwave for 3 minutes. Drain and hold under cold running water. Then remove the skins. They may pop out of their skins quite easily. Alternatively use the point of a sharp knife to make a small nick in the skin and then squeeze.
- Cook the peas in lightly boiling water for 3 minutes. Drain and hold under cold running water. Drain and set aside.
- Preheat the grill to high.
- Lightly oil a baking sheet and place the salmon fillets skin-side down. Melt half of the butter and brush each of the fish fillets. Season with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook under the grill for about 5 to 7 minutes, depending on the size of the fish fillets.
- While the rest of the butter in a large saucepan and add the vegetables. Stir the buttery vegetables and cook for 2 minutes. Add the cream and season to taste. Heat gently before serving.
- Dress each plate with rocket leaves and chopped tomatoes. Add a generous dollop of potato salad and the green vegetable mix. Lay the salmon over the green vegetables.