Salmon with Herb Butter
with asparagus / potato and parsnip puree
Compound butters are an easy way to add flavor and a sophisticated touch to most any meal. Serve this compound butter with herbs and lemon over roasted salmon and asparagus for a spring-inspired dinner that is worthy of guests.
Smarts: Compound butters store well in the fridge and can even be frozen. Make extra and use it over steak, pork chops or tossed with pasta.
- Garlic - 1 clove , chopped
- Basil, fresh - 1 Tbsp , chopped
- Butter - 3 Tbsp
- Lemon zest - 1/2 tsp
- Asparagus - 1 lb , trimmed
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
- Salmon - 1 lb
- Lemon juice - 1 tsp
- Parsnips - 8 oz , peeled and chopped (sub potatoes)
- Potatoes, russet - 1 lb , peeled and cubed
- Butter - 1 Tbsp
- Milk - 1/4 cup (sub stock)
- Salt - 1/4 tsp
Make herb butter - Peel garlic. Place garlic and basil on a cutting board and chop together until very fine (you want the basil in small enough pieces to easily blend into butter). Heat butter (the portion for the salmon) in the microwave for about 10 seconds, just until soft. Mash garlic, basil and lemon zest into butter. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
Potatoes - Peel and cube potatoes.
Heat oven to 425F / 218C. If herb butter was made ahead and refrigerated, place it in a warm spot near the oven to soften while you cook.
While oven heats, combine parsnips and potatoes in a saucepan. Cover with cold water and some salt. Bring to a boil. Simmer uncovered for 12 to 15 minutes until potatoes can be easily pierced by a knife.
Toss asparagus with cooking oil and season with some salt. Spread out on one half of a a sheet pan.
Brush the other half of the sheet pan with some oil and place salmon skin-side down on oil (use two sheet pans if it won't all fit). Season salmon with some salt and pepper.
Roast until salmon is cooked through and asparagus is tender. This should take 12 to 18 minutes, depending on the thickness of the salmon.
While salmon roasts, return to parsnips and potatoes. Drain and return to saucepan. Add butter (the portion for the puree), milk and salt. Puree with an immersion blender or mash with a potato masher until smooth, adding additional milk if needed. (Note: This "puree" should be more thin and smooth than traditional mashed potatoes.)
As soon as salmon comes out of the oven, top with half the herb butter. Squeeze lemon juice over asparagus.
Serve salmon over potato-parsnip puree with asparagus on the side. The remaining half of the herb butter is great spread on top of everything on the plate. Enjoy!