Simply Elegant Salmon in Champagne Sauce With Fresh Dill

"Elegant enough for company, yet quick and easy to prepare! Would be a lovely dinner for New Year's Eve, with a glass of bubbly. Adapted from Delia Smith's recipe."
photo by BakinBaby photo by BakinBaby
photo by BakinBaby
Ready In:


  • 6 middle-cut skinless salmon fillets (6-7 oz/175-200 g each)
  • 1 cup champagne
  • 1 12 tablespoons butter, plus a little extra for greasing
  • 2 medium shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 12 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream (double cream)
  • 6 teaspoons keta salmon caviar, optional to garnish
  • 3 sprigs fresh dill, to garnish
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 fresh lemon, cut into 6 wedges


  • First of all, smear a little butter over the base of a large frying pan, then arrange the fillets in it.
  • Now slowly pour the Champagne over the salmon (it will foam quite a lot, but not to worry), then bring it to a simmer over a medium heat. Now spoon the Champagne over the top of the fillets before putting the lid on.
  • Gently poach the salmon, covered, for about 8-10 minutes. The tip of a knife inserted into the thickest part will show if it is cooked when you just ease the flesh back.
  • While the salmon is poaching, melt the butter in a medium saucepan and cook the shallots in it over a gentle heat for 5-6 minutes, until softened and golden but not browned.
  • When the salmon is cooked, carefully lift the fillets on to a warmed dish, cover them with foil and keep warm.
  • Next, add the flour to the buttery shallot juices, stir it in and cook for 1-2 minutes more.
  • Now gradually add the salmon poaching liquid to the pan, a little at a time, then blend in the cream, whisking until the sauce is smooth. Let it come to a simmer and cook for 1-2 minutes, then season with salt & pepper to taste.
  • Serve the salmon fillets on warmed plates with a little of the sauce spooned over and a teaspoon of keta (optional) and a sprig of dill on top, along with fresh lemon wedges and hand the rest of the sauce round in a warmed jug.
  • Very nice accompanied with fresh, shelled peas, or a green salad with plenty of cucumber and a lemony dressing.

Questions & Replies

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  1. SarasotaCook
    Yummy! Just a simple nice recipe. No more to say. Didn't use the caviar because of the dish I was serving it over, but it would be great. Note: I bought a 1/2 split of champagne so it was just a small amount leftover, which I just had to drink. But that way you don't have to buy a whole bottle. Most liquor stores carry the small splits. This is a great sauce over lots of dishes. Thx as always.
  2. BakinBaby
    Outstanding! We've never poached fish before, so this was an experience, a good one! Sure hated to part with the champagne, but it was worth it. Will certainly make again. made for Catch of the Day Forum 4-2011


<p>Married to my sweetheart for almost forty years and we have two wonderful children who are grown and have flown the coop. Also, we have been blessed with a wonderful son-in-law and beautiful daughter-in-law, plus FIVE grandchildren: two beautiful granddaughters ages five and eight, and three sweet adorable little grandsons ages 2 months, 2 years and 3 years. My husband and I share a combination of English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh, Dutch, Swiss, Polish, Austrian, German and French heritage, and our son-in-law and daughter-in-law are both Hispanic. We've traveled extensively to many countries abroad (we lived in Germany), and have traveled and lived in several states here in the U.S.A. Many of the recipes I post here are influenced by our combined heritage or from our travels, or they are old family favorites that I want to share with you. I hope you enjoy! Have been to culinary school with many years of cooking (mostly for my family) under my belt, so know my way around a kitchen. And I'm very lucky to have the best sous chef in the world, dddddh! One of my favorite chefs of all time is Jacques Pepin! I have several of his cookbooks, and enjoy watching his television cooking show Fast Food My Way. Another top favorite is Julia Child (of course!). A few other chefs I read/enjoy watching on t.v. are: Giada At Home, Ina Garten's The Barefoot Contessa, Nigella Lawson's Nigella Bites, and Patti's Mexican Kitchen, and many more. On my bucket list is dining at Thomas Keller's establishment The French Laundry in Napa Valley, California... as well as Alice Waters' Chez Panisse in Berkeley, and the James Beard award winning Tartine Bakery and Cafe in San Francisco. One day!! &nbsp; Hobbies/Interests: Decorating with fresh flowers and herbs from the garden is my passion, and brings me deep joy! It's really hard to beat!! I love connecting with others who enjoy the same. Gardening, decorating, sewing, music, dancing, film, and reading are also up there. Spending quality time with my grandchildren, family, and friends (and cooking holiday meals!). Currently, a newfound passion has been so richly rewarding for me: genealogical research. I heart ancestry dot com. And last but certainly not least, I absolutely LOVE cats--we have two half-Siamese fur babies (cats) that allow us to live here!!&nbsp; &nbsp; A Note of Thanks~ I try to personally thank everyone who kindly makes and reviews my recipes, but sometimes I am busy, late, or may forget. Please know that I am always humbled that you would try one of my recipes, and I enjoy reading the reviews and seeing all the pretty photographs. Thanks so much!&nbsp;</p>
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