RECIPE – Salmon “Sautee” w/ Asparagus, Leeks, Artichokes & Mint

Recipe – Salmon "Sautee" w/ Asparagus, Leeks, Artichokes & Mint

By Henry Gould – March 19th, 2019

I just checked the weather, and even though it’s hovering around 0 degrees in Toronto and Montreal, spring has officially arrived in Vancouver! Everyone give yourself a round of applause, you made it through the harshest, coldest, most harrowing winter on record (*citation needed). Allergies are picking up right where they left off, but who cares when the sun is shining and the snow has melted. Sorry Ontario…

Now that the frost is gone, all those lovely spring vegetables are back in season and we can shift our eating accordingly. Let’s be honest, we’ve come so far with farming and food production that you can get heirloom tomatoes and watermelon all year long, regardless of the month. That being said, it does help inform our eating practices when we look to the seasons to guide us, especially when certain produce is at its peak.

There’s lots of great spring vegetables (arugula, peas, spring onions) but for this recipe we are going to tap into the world of leeks, asparagus and artichokes.

I’ll be honest, I hate cleaning and preparing artichokes, but the result is definitely worth it. This video shows you how its done, and I would urge you to try at least once. If you really must, you can use jarred artichokes, but make sure to rinse them of their oil / brine first, as you don’t want that flavor to carry into the final dish.

Asparagus and leeks are easy enough. Slice your leeks paper thin, and the asparagus into ~1 cm pieces. This is meant to be a sort of stir-fry, so everything should be bite sized and easy to eat. The lemon zest and juice right at the end is crucial to give it that zippy, spring flavor. The mint also lifts it to a new dimension.

Use whichever type of salmon you prefer, ideally something wild caught if possible.

Salmon “Sautee” w/ Asparagus, Leeks, Artichokes & Mint 

  • 1 filet of salmon per person, sliced into bite sized cubes
  • ~5 asparagus stalks per person, chopped into 1 cm pieces
  • 2 leeks, white part only, sliced thinly
  • 1 fresh artichoke per person, cleaned and sliced thinly
    • If using artichokes from a jar, a handful per person, rinsed of their brine / oil
  • 1 lemon, zested (juice reserved)
  • Butter
  • Sea Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Fresh mint

Get a large sautee pan hot and add a healthy knob of butter. More than you normally would. Add the artichokes and cook for a few minutes, then add the leeks. Cook for another 5 minutes until soft. Careful not to brown them.

Add the salmon and stir around in the pan to coat in all the butter, leeks and artichokes. Season everything with sea salt and pepper. Add the asparagus and keep tossing and turning the pan around to cook.

Because the pieces of fish are small, they will cook incredibly quickly, as will the asparagus. Once cooked, there should hopefully be some nice liquid in the pan. If it’s too dry, add a little more butter. Take off the heat and squeeze over some lemon juice, add the lemon zest, as well as a handful of fresh mint. Toss to combine.

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