Easy Poached Arctic Char in Butter Sauce
Sometimes you need a bit of inspiration for cooking; in this case, it happened to be a friend’s trip to Scandinavia.
This easy recipe for poached Arctic Char embellishes a classic french beurre blanc sauce. What could be better than butter, white wine with an exotic twist of pear and vanilla? Generally found in northern waters in Canada and several Nordic countries, Arctic Char is a cold-water fish that spawns in freshwater. The species shares similarities with salmon and trout, both of which are found easily at most fish counters in Provence.
Poached Arctic Char with Pear-Vanilla Beurre Blanc
- 3 1/2 cups White Wine divided
- 20 Baby carrots for the side
- juice of a Meyer Lemon
- 1 shallot peeled and cut in half
- large pinch of Salt
- 1 Pear
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
- pinch of Sugar
- 4 X 6 oz Arctic Char fillets skin removed, or salmon
- 4 tbsp Butter
- microgreens for garnish (optional)
- Bring 3 cups wine to a boil in a skillet in which the fish will easily fit without being crowded.
- Add the carrots and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until carrots are crisp-tender, then remove the carrots to a plate, cover, and keep warm.
- Place the remaining 1/2 cup white wine, Meyer lemon juice, and halved shallot in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Add salt and boil until liquid is reduced to a couple of tablespoons.
- Remove from heat and discard the shallot.
- Place a double layer of cheesecloth on the counter and, using the large holes on a box grater, grate the pear (skin and all) onto the cheesecloth. Gather up the cloth and, over a bowl, squeeze out all the juice. You should have about 1/3 cup.
- Add the pear juice, vanilla, and a pinch of sugar to the wine-lemon reduction and return to the heat to reduce, once more, to a couple of tablespoons. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Bring wine in skillet back to a simmer, just about to boil. Please see note below.
- Place the fillets, skinned side up, in the wine and simmer briskly for 2 minutes. Carefully turn the fillets and simmer an additional two minutes.
- Remove from the heat and set aside, keeping fish warm in the wine. (If using salmon, you will need to cook longer, as salmon fillets are much thicker than char.)
- Bring the sauce reduction to a boil again; whisk in the cold butter one tablespoon at a time until the beurre blanc is emulsified and ready to serve.
- Place the fillets on 4 plates, and gently spoon sauce over, allowing to pool on the side. Place cooked carrots to the side, and add a few microgreens atop the fish for garnish, if you like.