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Poached Salmon with Cucumber Raita

  • SERVINGS: 4
  • FAST

Gently simmering salmon in a flavorful white-wine broth is a classic cooking method that gives the fish a delicious flavor and a delicate texture. Serve this hot or at room temperature. Raita, the cooling condiment served in India, makes a superb sauce.

  1. 1 1/2 quarts water
  2. 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
  3. 3 tablespoons vinegar
  4. 1 onion, sliced
  5. 1 carrot, sliced
  6. 9 sprigs parsley
  7. 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  8. 1/4 teaspoon peppercorns
  9. 3 bay leaves
  10. 3 1/4 teaspoons salt
  11. 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and grated
  12. 1 3/4 cups plain yogurt
  13. 1 clove garlic, minced
  14. 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  15. 1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
  16. 2 pounds center-cut salmon fillet, cut into 4 pieces
  17. 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  1. In a large deep frying pan, combine the water, wine, vinegar, onion, carrot, parsley, thyme, peppercorns, bay leaves, and 2 1/4 teaspoons of the salt. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium glass or stainless-steel bowl, combine the cucumber and the remaining teaspoon salt. Let sit for 10 minutes. With your hands, squeeze the cucumber and discard the liquid. Put the cucumber back into the bowl and add the yogurt, garlic, mint, and ground pepper. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. Add the fish to the liquid in the pan and bring back to a simmer. Simmer, partially covered, until the fish is just barely done (it should still be translucent in the center), about 4 minutes for a 1-inch-thick fillet. Remove the pan from the heat and let the fish sit in the liquid for 2 minutes. Transfer to plates and, if you like, remove the skin. Serve the salmon warm or at room temperature. Top with the raita and then sprinkle the raita with the paprika.

Suggested Pairing

To match the acidity of the yogurt and the richness of the fish, look for a white that blends crisp acidity with good body. Try a Pinot Gris from Oregon or a Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand.