Salmon with Herby Butter and Barberries
Preparation time: 30 minutes, plus, making the saffron liquid
Cooking time: 30 minutes
60g salted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
40g dried cranberries
3 handful parsley leaves, finely chopped
3 handful coriander/cilantro leaves, finely chopped
2 handful tarragon leaves, finely chopped
2 handful of dill leaves, finely chopped
6 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
40g walnut pieces, coarsely chopped
2 tbsps pomegranate molasses
2 tbsps saffron liquid
1.5kg salmon scaled, butterflied and skin scored
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Lemon or lime wedges, to serve
1. Preheat the oven to 180 deg C and grease a baking pan with some butter.
2. Put the cranberries in a bowl and cover with water, then leave to soak for five minutes. Drain well and pat dry with paper towels.
3. In a bowl, mix the herbs, garlic, drained barberries, walnuts, saffron liquid, 30g of butter and the pomegranate molasses to create a paste. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
4. Rub the interior and exterior of the fish with some salt and stuff the fish with the butter and herb paste. Sew up the fish cavity using a needle and thread or secure with three or four wooden cocktail sticks.
5. Melt the remaining butter in a small saucepan over a medium heat.
6. Baste the fish with the butter and season with pepper.
7. Bake, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes, depending on the size of the fish (the general rule is 7 minutes cooking time per 2.5cm measured at the thickest part of the fish), until the fish is tender, cooked through, crisp and golden.
8. Remove the fish from the oven and transfer it to a platter.
9. Drizzle with the cooking juices and serve with lemon wedges.
Makes 1 tbsp
10 saffron threads
1. Toast the saffron threads in a heavy pan over medium heat for 30 seconds until fragrant, shaking the pan often.
2. Transfer the saffron to a mortar and leave to cool for 1 to 2 minutes, before grinding to a powder.
3. Mix the ground saffron with 1 tbsp boiling water and set aside to infuse for at least an hour (until a rich orange hue appears). The colour and flavour will continue to develop for about 12 hours.
DID YOU KNOW? Pomegranates are seen as a symbol of fertility and research shows drinking its juice during pregnancy may prevent brain damage in babies.