Noisettes of salmon with samphire and asparagus

Noisettes of salmon with samphire and asparagus

Leiths How to Cook
Peter Cassidy


Quantity Ingredient
4 salmon cutlets, each about 170 g and 2 cm thick
200g samphire
bunch thin asparagus spears
1 lemon
20-25g butter
freshly ground black pepper


  1. To prepare the salmon cutlets as noisettes, place the cutlet on a board and carefully release the skin from the ends to halfway up each side, but do not detach completely. Keeping the skin intact at the top of the cutlet, cut down on each side of the bone, then around the circular back bone, continuing down the inside to remove the bone.
  2. Using kitchen tweezers, pin-bone the remaining fish; the pin bones are found through the widest section of each half of the cutlet.
  3. Take one skinned end and tuck it in the place where the bone was, so it effectively replaces the bone. Wrap the other end around the outside to create a disc of fish. Wrap the loose skin around the noisette to enclose it and tie with string to secure.
  4. Place on a large plate or tray and repeat with any remaining cutlets, then weight the cutlets lightly to set their shape. Remove the string after cooking, before serving.
  5. Pick over the samphire and trim the root ends, if necessary. Trim the coarse ends of the asparagus. Heat the oven to 180ºC.
  6. Fill a saucepan with water, place over a medium heat and bring to a simmer. Blanch the samphire in the simmering water for 3 minutes until just tender, then lift out, drain, refresh in cold water and set aside. Blanch the asparagus in the simmering water for 1–2 minutes; drain, refresh and set aside. Juice the lemon.
  7. Heat a non-stick ovenproof frying pan over a low to medium heat and add 1–2 teaspoons butter. Season the noisettes lightly with salt and, when the butter is foaming, add them to the pan. Cook until golden on the underside, then turn over and gently brown the second side.
  8. Transfer the frying pan to the oven for 3–4 minutes for the noisettes to cook almost through.
  9. Heat another frying pan over a medium heat and add the remaining butter. Allow it to melt before adding the samphire and asparagus, to heat through. Taste and season with pepper.
  10. Remove the noisettes from the oven and lift out of the frying pan onto a board; remove the string and the skin. Taste the pan juices and add a few drops of lemon juice and seasoning to taste. Divide the samphire and asparagus between 4 plates and place a salmon noisette on top. Drizzle with the pan juices and serve.


  • Noisettes of salmon with crushed new potatoes and peas: Replace the samphire and asparagus with 500 g new potatoes. Simmer until tender, drain, then lightly crush. While still warm, stir through 50 g butter until melted, then 100 g cooked, small peas with salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle the pan juices over each plated noisette, as for the main recipe.

    Noisettes of salmon with new potatoes and watercress sauce: Replace the samphire and asparagus with 500 g new potatoes. Blanch the leaves from a bunch of watercress in boiling water for 30 seconds. Drain, refresh in cold water, then drain again. Melt 30 g butter in a saucepan, stir in 30 g plain flour and cook over a low heat for 1–2 minutes. Stir in 300 ml fish stock, then 150 ml double cream and simmer, stirring, for 2 minutes. Let cool slightly, then blitz with the watercress in a blender or food processor until you have a pale green sauce with dark green flecks. Season with salt and pepper to taste and reheat gently before serving with the noisettes of salmon and new potatoes.
Leiths School of food and wine
cookery course
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