- 400g pack asparagus
Labour-intensive to grow, asparagus are the young shoots of a cultivated lily plant. They're…
- 1 tbsp olive oil
Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…
- 4 salmon fillets, about 140g/5oz each, skinned
With its delicate, sweet flesh and wide availability, salmon is one of the most popular fish.…
- 2 lemon
Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…
- 50g butter, melted
Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…
- 6 tbsp coarse breadcrumb
- 1 tbsp coarsely ground or crushed peppercorn
- small bunch chives, chopped to serve
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Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Cook the asparagus in a pan of boiling salted water for 1 min, drain, then run under the cold tap for a few secs. Drain again, toss in olive oil and spread out to a single layer in a large ovenproof roasting tin. Check the salmon for pin-bones, then arrange on top of the asparagus.
To make the crust, finely grate the zest of 1 lemon, then add this to the butter, breadcrumbs and pepper, and sprinkle liberally over the salmon. Cut the lemons into wedges. Nestle two-thirds of the wedges around the fish, then squeeze the juice from the remainder directly over the fish.
Roast fish for 12-15 mins or until it is just cooked through, it should be opaque and firm (see How to cook it, below left). Sprinkle with chives, then serve immediately with buttered new potatoes.
Why is it different colours?
Farmed salmon often has a nature identical (artificial) colourant added to the food to colour the flesh. Organic salmon is quite pale although a natural pigment is included in their diet. Some Wild Pacific slamon is a very rich pink colour due to its natural diet.
Atlantic salmon is widely available from farmed sources, so buy this rather than wild Atlantic salmon, which is increasingly scarce. Try to buy organic salmon, which is certified by the strict guidelines of the Soil Association or RSPCA-certified salmon, which is labelled Freedom Food and is guaranteed to have been farmed responsibly.