Crispy skin salmon with braised white beans

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Late spring or early summer is a great time to be cooking salmon, and this dish works beautifully on the barbecue. Silky on the inside yet crispy on the out, salmon gets grounded by the earthy addition of white beans.

Salmon as it should be: Crispy on the outside, soft and silky on the inside.
Salmon as it should be: Crispy on the outside, soft and silky on the inside. Photo: William Meppem

Ingredients

4 x 180g pieces salmon fillet, skin on

sea salt and freshly ground pepper

extra virgin olive oil, to drizzle

1 lemon, cut into wedges

Braised white beans

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

sea salt and freshly ground pepper

440g tin cooked white beans

400g tin whole roma tomatoes, juices reserved, roughly chopped

3 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, chopped

2 tbsp fresh mint, chopped

Garlic yoghurt

1 cup sheep's milk yoghurt

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded and grated

juice of half a lemon

Method

To prepare the beans, heat the olive oil in a heavy-based pan over medium heat and fry the garlic with a pinch of sea salt for about 1 minute. Add the white beans, tomatoes and their reserved juice, and season to taste. Simmer gently for about 15 minutes and fold through the herbs. Check the seasoning.

To make the yoghurt, simply add all ingredients to a bowl and mix. Season to taste.

Scrape the skin of the salmon with the back of a knife moving backwards and forwards to remove most of the moisture, then season with sea salt and drizzle with oil.

Heat a frying pan until smoking, add the salmon, skin side down, and cook for 3 minutes or until the skin is crisp and the fish is cooked about 1/3 of the way through. Turn the fish and cook for a further 1-2 minutes. Remove from the pan and rest for 1 minute in a warm place.

Divide the braised white beans among 4 large plates and place the salmon on top, skin side up. Add a dollop of the garlic yoghurt, a squeeze of lemon juice, a sprinkle of sea salt and a grind of pepper to each.

HOT TIPS

• The yoghurt is also nice with herbs such as coriander, parsley, dill and mint through it, either singularly or all together.

 

SOMETHING TO DRINK

Grüner veltliner
Lark Hill in the Canberra wine district has established itself as a local pioneer of grüner veltliner, a native Austrian varietal. It's 2013 Biodynamic Grüner Veltiner ($45) is fresh, crisp and dry, with soft melon, citrus and stonefruit notes that perfectly complement the weight of the salmon and beans.

Photography by William Meppem. Styling by Hannah Meppem. Food preparation by Dominic Smith

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  • Main Ingredients - Fish
  • Course - Dinner
  • Occasion - Family meals, Dinner Party, Midweek dinner, Barbecue

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