I had a hankering for something a little creamy and something a little Frenchy. It was nice to return to The Country Cooking of France cook book, that always steered us in tasty directions in the past. We’d actually made this recipe once before, and thought it would be a good one to try out again. Plus a little bacon and mashed yams never hurt anybody!
adapted from The Country Cooking of France
1 tbsp butter, softened
2 salmon fillets (1 lb total), without skin
2 oz lean bacon, cut into lardons (1/2 cm strips)
1/2 cup creme fraiche or heavy cream
1 tbsp grated fresh horseradish or 1-1/2 tbsp bottled horseradish
3 tbsp onion, chopped
Heat oven to 350 F. Butter a flameproof baking dish. Wash and dry the salmon and poke holes in the flesh with the point of a knife. Poke a lardon in each hole (called larding), using about half the lardons in each fillet. Spread salmon with butter and sprinkle with pepper. Roast for 20-30 minutes, basting if necessary. Transfer salmon to a platter and keep warm. Skim off and discard the fat from the baking dish. Add cream and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve pan juices. Whisk in the horseradish, onion, salt and pepper, and bring back to a boil. Adjust seasoning and pour into a sauce bowl.
I was pleased that not only were we able to make this from our available ingredients but also that it tasted fabulous! It was just the right amount of horseradish–not too strong, but still potent and interesting. The salmon was moist and flavourful. The side of mashed yams/potato we had with it leant it a nice sweetness against the pungency of the horseradish. Yum.