Poached Salmon with Hollandaise Sauce

A classic dish, elegant in its simplicity, from Rachel Allen
By Rachel Allen
Poached Salmon with Hollandaise Sauce
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Effort: medium


For the Salmon

  • 1.5 kg salmon, on the bone

For the hollandaise sauce

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 110 g butter, cut into cubes
  • squeeze of lemons

Tips and Suggestions

leftover hollandaise is excellent in mashed potato!


1. Choose a saucepan which will just fit the chunk of salmon you have. Half fill with salted water (using 1 tbsp salt to every 1.2 litres of water). Bring to the boil.

2. Add the salmon, bring back to the boil and simmer gently for 20 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave to sit in the water for a further 5 minutes. You can keep it in a warming oven, covered, for up to 20 minutes before serving. Only take off the skin when you are ready to serve as doing so too early will result in dry salmon.

3. For the hollandaise sauce: put the egg yolks into a saucepan, whisk in 1 tablespoon of water then put the saucepan on a very low heat. Very gradually, whisk in the butter bit by bit - it should emulsify as you whisk it in. The heat should be so low that you should be able to keep your hands on the sides of the saucepan; if it gets too hot you can take it off the heat every now and then.

4. When all the butter has been added, taste the sauce. It'll need a bit of lemon juice. It probably will not need any salt if you have used salted butter. Keep warm in a pyrex jug sitting in a saucepan with about 4cm of very hot but not boiling water. It will keep like this for a couple of hours, just heat up the water gently when it cools down.

5. To serve, pull the skin off the salmon and ease the flesh off the bone with a fish slice (it will not come off the bone if it is not cooked). Serve with the hollandaise sauce.

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