salmon, pan seared

4 center-cut salmon fillets (each about 6 ounces and 1-1/4 inches thick), pin bones removed
Salt and ground black pepper
1 teaspoon canola or vegetable oil

Heat a 12-inch heavy bottomed skillet for 3 minutes over high heat. Sprinkle salmon with salt and pepper to taste. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. When oil shimmers (but does not smoke) add fillets, skin side down, and cook without moving fillets until pan regains lost heat, about 30 seconds. Reduce heat to medium-high; continue to cook until skin side is well browned and bottom half of fillets turn opaque, 4-1/2 minutes. Turn fillets and cook, without moving them, until they are no longer translucent on the exterior and are firm, but not hard, when gently squeezed; 3 minutes for medium-rare and 3-1/2 minutes for medium. Remove fillets from pan; let stand 1 minute. Pat with paper towel to absorb excess fat on surface if desired. Serve with warm balsamic vinaigrette with herbs.
Warm Balsamic Vinaigrette with Herbs
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 medium clove garlic
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt
Ground black pepper
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Whisk vinegar with garlic, parsley, thyme, salt and pepper; slowly whisk in olive oil. Set aside. Add vinaigrette to hot pan once fish has been sautéed and removed, and any juices in the pan set aside. Bring to simmer and continue simmering 1 minute. Pour in any reserved juices. Spoon warm sauce over fish and serve.
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