This article first appeared in the 2014 edition of Eating & Drinking, which is on newsstands until spring 2015. Order the 2014 Eating & Drinking Guide, and we’ll mail it you or a friend in time for the holidays.
The Chefx tagline says it all: Recipes. Ingredients. Delivered. Launched in the fall of 2013, the business is a brilliant partnership between local entrepreneur Jeff Heaton and the who’s who of chefs around town. Here’s how it works: you subscribe to the service and Heaton shows up at your door each week with chef-tested recipes (with easy-to-follow directions), a cooler-full of ingredients, and a wine pairing suggestion.
In other words, you pay a bit of a premium and, in doing so, get to forgo running all over town sourcing the ingredients to create those dishes you drool over at the likes of Mariposa Farm, Les Fougères, Whalesbone, and Black Cat Bistro.
Or, if you’re feeling ambitious, you can try these yourself at home. Here, Charles Part of Les Fougeres shares a favourite, and versatile, recipe.
Maple-soya glazed Salmon
Photo by Christian Lalonde – PhotoluxStudio.com
With Pink Grapefruit, Parsnip, Greens
& Toasted Hazelnuts
Chef Charles Part has been at the helm of the iconic Les Fougères restaurant in Chelsea for two decades now, serving up flavourful cuisine inspired by the bounty in the surrounding gardens. He chose this salmon recipe for Chefx knowing that the vibrant flavours would seduce the city’s home chefs. “You can use wild coho salmon, fresh arctic char, even trout. It’s a very versatile recipe,” explains Part. Still, don’t expect to find it on the Les Fougères menu every day. The chef likes to change things seasonally, challenging himself and keeping things fresh (though he does concede that he rotates a few favourites through the menu for the benefit of his gratified regulars).
- 2 fillets sockeye salmon (skinless)
- 1 pink grapefruit
- 2 navel oranges
- 4 parsnips
- 2 baby bok choy
- 6 hazelnuts
- ½ cup chicken stock
- ¼ cup white wine
- 2 tbsp sherry
- 1 /8 cup cream
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tbsp + 1 tsp soya sauce
- 1 / 8 tsp ground nutmeg
- butter ( 1 tbsp + 1 tbsp)
- vegetable oil ( 1 tsp + 1 tsp)
- salt and pepper
Total Time: 40 minutes
Wine Suggestion: 2010 Henry of Pelham Estate Riesling
($17.95 Vintages, 557165)
Getting started Preheat oven to 350°F
Hazelnuts: chop roughly
Parsnips: peel and chop into ½-inch pieces
Grapefruit: slice in half horizontally; first half: cut/spoon out segments; second half: juice
Baby bok choy: cut in half lengthwise
Chicken stock: add ¼ cube to ½ cup boiling water
Toast hazelnuts Spread hazelnuts on a baking sheet and toast briefly in a 350°F oven until they begin to brown slightly.
Prepare the grapefruit/citrus jus In a small pot, combine orange juice, grapefruit juice, chicken stock, and wine and heat over low-medium.
Simmer until reduced by half (12–15 minutes). Once reduced, swirl in 1 tbsp butter with a whisk.
Prepare the parsnip purée Place parsnips in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and simmer until tender. Once cooked, drain water from pot.
Add cream, sherry, ground nutmeg, and 1 tbsp butter. Mash (or purée in a blender if preferred) until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Prepare the maple-soya glaze In a small saucepan, combine maple syrup and 2 tbsp of the soya sauce and heat over low-medium. Let simmer until reduced by half (or until a nice syrupy consistency is reached, about 5–8 minutes).
Prepare the bok choy In a wide saucepan, add bok choy and about 1 cm water. Cook over high heat until tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Prepare the salmon Marinate the fish briefly in 1 tsp vegetable oil and the remaining 1 tsp of soya sauce. Oil and heat a grill pan (or frying pan) over high heat until hot. Place salmon in pan and grill for 2 minutes per side. Remove pan from heat and let fish rest until flesh flakes moistly.
Assembly On heated plates, place a stretched spoonful of parsnip purée. Place bok choy in centre. Place salmon resting up on bok choy. Brush salmon with the maple-soya glaze and let some drops of the glaze garnish the plate. Place the reserved grapefruit segments on the salmon. Drizzle the citrus jus around. Sprinkle the toasted nuts on the plate. Bon appétit!