Grilled salmon with fennel and pine nut salad

Light courgette fritters and a shaved fennel salad make perfect summer accompaniments to Aaron Crazes grilled salmon
By Aaron Craze
Grilled salmon with fennel and pine nut salad
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

For the zucchini fritti

  • 50 g plain flour
  • 50 g rice flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 90 ml ice-cold water
  • 1 tsp clear honey
  • 300 ml vegetable oil
  • 5 tbsp soda water
  • 4 baby courgettes with flowers or 2 small courgettes, cut in half, seeds scraped out

For the salad

  • 2 bulb fennel
  • 100 g pine kernels, lightly toasted in a dry frying pan
  • 1/2 red chillies, seeds removed and finely chopped
  • 8 sun-blushed tomatoes, chopped
  • 100 g crème fraîche
  • 1 unwaxed lemon, juice and zest
  • 1 handfuls mint

For the salmon

  • 4 thick salmon, about 175g each, pin boned and skinned
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges

For the chilli and mint oil

  • 100 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 handfuls mint, finely chopped

Method

1. For the zucchini fritti: first make the batter. Mix the flour, rice flour and baking powder in a bowl and season with salt and pepper.

2. Pour the ice-cold water into a measuring jug and stir in the honey. Whisk the liquid into the flour to make a thick, smooth batter and set aside (if the batter is very stiff, add a little extra water to loosen it slightly).

3. For the salad: remove the outer leaves from the fennel and trim the tops (reserve the green fronds). Cut in half and finely slice on a mandolin or with a sharp knife.

4. Mix the sliced fennel with the green fronds and the pine nuts, chilli and tomatoes. Stir in the crème fraîche, lemon zest and half the lemon juice. Set aside in the refrigerator.

5. For the salmon: preheat the grill to medium. Season the salmon well and rub all over with the olive oil. Grill until firm but still moist (about 8-10 minutes), turning halfway.

6. Pour the remaining lemon juice from the salad over the salmon and set aside to rest.

7. To fry the zucchini fritti, heat the vegetable oil to 190C.

8. Gently stir the soda water into the batter. Mix until the batter has the consistency of double cream - it should coat the back of a spoon thickly but pour freely.

9. Dip the courgettes in the batter and carefully lower into the oil, letting them fall away from you to avoid splashing. Fry until golden brown (about 4-5 minutes). Drain on a paper towel and season well with salt.

10. For the chilli and mint oil: mix together all the ingredients.

11. To serve, divide the salad between 4 plates and place a piece of salmon on top. Arrange the piping hot fritti on the side and serve with some torn mint leaves scattered on top, a drizzle of chilli and mint oil, and a wedge of lemon.

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