Salmon Beurre Blanc

Salmon Beurre Blanc is simple yet delicious. This is one recipe that anyone can make as long as you follow this one rule. Never ever over cook salmon or it will be dry and unpleasant. The details explained in this Honey Mustard Salmon recipe explores three things that most people don’t know about salmon and fish, that everyone should know before cooking a fish recipe. This recipe however, is less about how to cook salmon to the correct temperature as it is to share three aspects with you that you need to know to perfect this particular French technique — the beurre blanc technique.

Nutrition Rating: BroccoliBroccoliBroccoli

What is Beurre Blanc?

Beurre Blanc is a French technique to create a white wine reduction sauce. Also known as “better than butter” sauce that is normally paired with fish or chicken. The sauce is made by boiling down wine and vinegar with shallots and herbs, then it is emulsified with butter. Next, the sauce is normally strained from the shallots and herbs to create a finished look. Finally, the sauce is either drizzled over a portion of meat, or the meat is served on the sauce.

No two recipes are the same for beurre blanc, and there are hundreds of variations to the technique. However, there is one common thread about beurre blanc, and that is the fact that it is an emulsification of wine and butter. The recipe that follows is an interpretation of beurre blanc, but breaks some of the traditional French rules. For instance we don’t use shallot, we use onion and garlic instead. Also we don’t strain sauce either, we like the vegetables to stay in the sauce. Finally, we don’t drizzle the sauce in a fancy way over and around the fish, but instead use the sauce to poach the salmon.

Salmon Beurre Blanc, First Aspect to Know

First know that the most crucial factor is the wine you use. What I see many people do is buy a cheap wine for cooking with, or buy “cooking wine” at the grocery store. Please don’t do this. The problem is that cheap wine and cooking wine tastes bad. If it tastes bad drinking it from a glass then how can you expect it to be any different in the food you are eating. There is no magic  that changes bad tasting wine to good tasting wine when you cook it. Here is the solution, use a wine for which you like the taste. The wine does not have to be great quality, it just needs to taste good from the start for you.
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Salmon Beurre Blanc, Third Aspect to Know

Third, know that beurre blanc is a light colored sauce. This recipe calls for adding mushrooms to the sauce to increase the savoriness. Mushrooms will turn the sauce gray if you don’t follow this step. First, cook the mushrooms ahead of time. Second, strain the mushrooms. Third, dry the mushrooms with a paper towel and extract any moisture you can. This will minimize the mushroom from discoloring the resulting sauce.

Note: Cooking Salmon – Done Temperature

Please note that the US FDA recommends the fresh fish be cooked to 145 degrees. Also understand that the US FDA says that properly frozen fish can be eaten safely below 145 degrees as long as its handled properly.  Please review these guidelines before making this recipe. There are risks if you eat fish at a temperature less than 145F degrees, however the fish is much more tasty and desirable at lower temperatures.  The most desirable done temperature for salmon can be tricky when baking in the oven, as there are many varieties of salmon and the different varieties have different characteristics.

We are particularly picky about the salmon done temperature. We have found that for Atlantic and Norwegian salmon we like a temperature of 130F to 132F degrees, at this point the salmon is ever so lightly a tiny bit rare, and not at all dry. However, if you cook sockeye salmon the same way it will be a big mistake, as sockeye salmon will surely be dry tasting at that temperature. For sockeye salmon we have found that 123F to 125F degrees to be the most ideal. At this temperature once again the salmon will be ever so lightly a tiny bit rare, and not at all dry.

Although we have found that salmon tastes best when it is cooked at a temperature less than 145 degrees, we don’t recommend it to anyone. If you decide to cook it at a lower temperature for better taste, do so at your own risk. Once again carefully read the US FDA guidelines for cooking fish.

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Salmon Beurre Blanc
Salmon Beurre Blanc
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Salmon Beuree Blanc is simple yet delicious. This is one recipe that anyone can make as long as you follow this one rule. Never ... read more
Salmon Beurre Blanc
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Rating: 0
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Salmon Beuree Blanc is simple yet delicious. This is one recipe that anyone can make as long as you follow this one rule. Never ... read more
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  1. Gather the ingredients for making salmon beurre blanc. Then read the tips found here.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Ingredients
  2. Measure the wine and set a side.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Wine measurement
  3. Pull apart the mushrooms and put in to a frying pan with 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp olive oil on medium high heat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, leaving some salt and pepper to add to the onion. During the frying of the mushroom, the mushroom will let out lots of moisture.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Mushroom cooking
  4. The mushrooms are done when the moisture from the mushroom has evaporated. Transfer to a strainer, and set a side.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Mushroom cooked
  5. Slice the onion into thin strips and put them into the frying pan with 1 tbsp of olive oil on medium high heat. Sprinkle remaining salt and pepper on the onion.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Onion cooking
  6. Onions are done when they begin to turn brown.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Onion cooked
  7. Add the wine to the onion and bring the wine to a boil on medium high heat.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Wine reducing
  8. Reduce the wine in half.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Wine reduced
  9. While still cooking add tarragon to the reduced wine.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Tarragon
  10. Add crushed red pepper immediately following the tarragon to the reduced wine. Continue to reduce for about a minute.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Add red pepper
  11. Turn the heat down to low and add green onions and garlic.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Add green onion wine reduction
  12. After the simmer breaks, and while the wine reduction is hot add one tab of butter and whisk the butter into the reduced wine. Once the first tab is incorporated, then add the second tab. Whisk the second tab of butter into the sauce to combine.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Butter
  13. Finally, add one tbsp of olive oil to the sauce, whisk the olive oil in to combine.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Add olive oil
  14. Pad the mushrooms with paper towel to dry up any moisture. Add mushrooms to the wine sauce.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Finished sauce
  15. Create a bed of mushrooms and onions on a sheet of foil.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Create mushroom bed
  16. Layer over the top of the mushrooms a fillet of salmon.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Salmon on mushroom bed
  17. Layer over the top of the salmon another bed of mushrooms.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Mushroom on salmon
  18. Tent the foil over the salmon and fold the edges together.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Foil wrap salmon
  19. Gently fold the foil over the salmon.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Foil wrap salmon
  20. Place in an oven at 375F degrees for about 15 minutes. Use a digital temperature probe to monitor the temperature of the salmon. When the salmon is done to your liking remove from oven. Please refer to this article for information about cooking temperature of salmon.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc - Temp probe salmon
  21. When salmon is done to your liking, then plate and serve.

    Salmon Beurre Blanc
Nutrition Facts
Salmon Beurre Blanc
Amount Per Serving
Calories 537 Calories from Fat 342
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 38g 58%
Saturated Fat 13g 65%
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 10g
Cholesterol 110mg 37%
Sodium 817mg 34%
Potassium 226mg 6%
Total Carbohydrates 7g 2%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Sugars 2g
Protein 26g 52%
Vitamin A 24%
Vitamin C 16%
Calcium 2%
Iron 7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Recipe Notes

Chef Tips: Making great Salmon Beurre Blanc

Ingredients are important when making this recipe. If you use the best ingredients then your result will turn out for the best.  Although most recipes for Beurre Blanc do not call for mushroom, I add them to increase the umami flavor in the sauce. Be sure to cook them on the side in another frying pan and strain them well before putting into the sauce otherwise the mushroom is going to bleed its gray matter into your sauce and your sauce will be gray.

There's a difference between the various types of salmon, be sure to adapt this recipe to the type of salmon that you are cooking. As a rule of thumb, the firmer the fish is the less time required to cook.

Serving Size = 4oz of salmon

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