Provençal Salmon with Sauce Pistou Recipe

About: At Wolfgang Puck's Spago, this simple recipe celebrates high quality ingredients. Ripe tomatoes and a very good olive oil are essential for the sauce, while poaching the salmon highlights the quality of the fish.

Recipe Info

Restaurant: Spago | Las Vegas

Servings: 8
Prep Time: 8 hour(s) 30 minutes
Cuisine: American
Meal Type: Dinner
Main Ingredient: salmon
Dish Type: Main Course
Cooking Method: Poach
Season/Occasion: Any Occasion
Dificulty: Moderate
Vegetarian: No


Sauce Pistou

In a nonreactive bowl combine all ingredients, seasoning to taste with salt, pepper, and cayenne. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to marinate at room temperature overnight.

Sauce Pistou Note:

The Sauce Pistou should be prepared the night before you will prepare the salmon.

Provençal Salmon

Cut the carrots, leek, and celery into julienne strips. Into a small saucepan, strain 1 cup of the Court Bouillon. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, add the julienne vegetables, and cook until they are tender but still crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain the vegetables and reserve them.

In a large saucepan, bring the remaining Court Bouillon to a boil over high heat. Meanwhile, cut the salmon into individual serving-sized pieces, and wrap each piece in aluminum foil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, place the salmon packages in the Court Bouillon, and poach them for about 5 minutes. To check the salmon for doneness, remove one package from the liquid with a slotted spoon or spatula and carefully unwrap it. The center of the fillet should still be slightly pink.

To serve, divide the julienne of vegetables among serving plates. Arrange a salmon fillet on top of the vegetables on each plate and spoon a tablespoon of the sauce pistou (see recipe) on each fillet. Pass the remaining sauce for guests to add to taste.

Court Bouillon

Slice the carrots, celery, and leek into ¼-inch pieces. Put them in a saucepan.  Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Continue boiling for 20 minutes, until the liquid is flavorful.

Prep Time Note:

includes 20 hours marinating time


1 C. extra virgin olive oil 2 medium carrots 2 carrots, peeled 2 Tbsp. sherry wine vinegar 2 stalks celery 1 leek, white part only, thoroughly washed 1 leek, thoroughly washed 2 stalks celery, strings removed 1 bunch(es) fresh basil leaves, chopped 1 sprig fresh thyme 3 shallots, minced 2 qt. court bouillon (see recipe) 4 ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and finely diced 1 bay leaf 2 lb. Chinook or King salmon filets 1 recipe Sauce Pistou (see recipe) 1/2 lemon, zest of 1 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper 1 Tbsp. minced fresh chives 1 Tbsp. minced fresh tarragon 2 qt. water (to taste) salt and fresh ground black pepper 2 C. dry white wine (to taste) cayenne pepper


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