Matthew's recipe: Poached Sea Trout or Salmon with Watercress Sauce

Each month, Matthew Jukes gives you a simple but stunning starter or main course recipe to serve with either Jukes 1, 6 or 8.  

This month is Jukes 8 paired with Poached Sea Trout or Salmon with Watercress Sauce (approximately for two)  

Ingredients - One wild sea trout fillet (preferably) or wild salmon fillet ( I don’t like to use steaks as they tend to look unsightly).

Method - Poaching fish is easy but can test your inner strength. Cover the fillet with cold water, bring to the boil and then leave to cool down completely in the water. This will ensure the fillet is cooked but still ‘dark pink’ in the middle – I prefer to serve salmon on the rare side. If you are poaching on the bone, leave to boil for a few more minutes. I choose not to add any herbs or flavours to the poaching liquid as I feel (particularly with wild sea trout) it can overshadow the very delicate flavours of the fish. If you like, a bay leaf, peppercorns, mace and sliced onion all work well.

Sea Trout/Salmon is always best served slightly warm or at room temperature.

Ingredients - Watercress sauce

1 bunch of watercress finely chopped, 1 shallot finely chopped, double cream or crème fraiche, nutmeg, butter and a lemon.  Keep a couple of sprigs of watercress for a garnish.

Method - In a shallow frying pan, ‘sweat’ the shallot gently in the melted butter until soft – take your time, it will take around 8-10 minutes for the shallot to completely soften. Add the watercress and a large spoonful of crème fraiche or double cream and grate in nutmeg, pepper and lemon juice and salt to taste. Don’t let the watercress cook for long – you want it to keep its vibrant green colour. I like to leave it rough but you can always put the sauce through a food processor for a more professional finish. Serve alongside the salmon, with a wedge of lemon, potatoes and your choice of vegetable (see below).

 Ingredients - Jersey Royals

Method - Scrub and clean as many Jersey Royals as desired and boil with a sprig of fresh mint and plenty of salt until soft but still holding themselves together. Drain and remove the sprig of mint, put straight back in the pan with a large knob of butter and some salt, pepper and finely chopped fresh mint. Serve dripping in melted butter.

Also - Fresh steamed asparagus or green beans work well alongside this dish.