When I was a kid, Saturday was fish day. My parents would come pick us up from school at 11.30am, we’d have lunch and then, most of the time, head over to Normandy to visit my grandmother. While Mama and Papa were at the supermarket to fill Mamie’s fridge for the week, my sister and I would do what we couldn’t do the rest of the week: watch TV for hours while stuffing ourselves with cookies and chocolate.
Anyway, back to Saturday lunch, it was usually steamed salmon or dogfish with steamed vegetables – potatoes, carrots and courgettes – and a dollop of mayonnaise.
Brown butter is another story. I’d already had brown butter but always found it lacked a little kick, a little acidity. I made this recipe for the first time on New Year’s Eve, when I decided I would make the dinner. I made fish (salmon) with brown butter, and threw in some leftover lime juice. And it was pretty yummy-yummy-yummy, I daresay.
I would suggest working in the following order: preheat the oven and prepare the asparagus, then make the sauce. By the time it’s ready, your oven will be at the right temperature and you can pop the asparagus in while you’re cooking the salmon.
- 4 salmon fillets, at room temperature
- 1 tbsp butter
For the brown butter lime sauce
- 85g / 6 tbsp butter
- 3 to 5 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Salt & pepper
For the roasted asparagus
- 500g / 1 lb asparagus spears
- Olive oil
- Salt & pepper
In a frying pan, melt the butter over medium-high heat.
Once your pan is piping hot, carefully place the salmon (lay it away from you, not towards you or you might get burnt by the butter) and cook 3-5 minutes on each side, until salmon has cooked through.
Serve immediately, drizzled with sauce.
For the brown butter lime sauce:
Place the butter in a small saucepan and allow to melt over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter is fragrant and has turned slightly brown (but not burnt). Remove from the heat and allow to cool down a little bit before pouring into a blender along with the lime juice and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and blend until well combined. Pour sauce back into the pan, straining it if need be. You may need to rewarm it on low heat before serving.
For the roasted asparagus:
Preheat your oven to 200°C/400°F and line a roasting tin with aluminium foil.
Cut off the asparagus ends if they are tough.
Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Toss the spears to coat them evenly.
Arrange the asparagus spears in a single layer in the pan.
Depending on your oven and the thickness of the asparagus, roast for 10-12 minutes, or until the asparagus are tender when pierced with a fork.