Over the 20-plus years were pleased, and so were
I’ve been cooking pro- customers, because it was
fessionally, I’ve had sodelicious.
plenty of opportunities But most Canadians are
to observe how my landlocked, living far from
customers’tastes have changed. seas or lakes teeming with
Twenty years ago, a few afi- fish. And fish is not really
cionados would choose the fish part of our culinary culture.
on the menu and a few others It has even been seen as a
would opt for seafood. But if I dish of deprivation (to be
looked at all the dishes chosen on eaten when fasting or diet-
any given evening, there was a ing, for example). So fish-
clear preference for meat. based recipes haven’t always
However, that was more than 20 years evoked gastronomic pleasure. Today, cus-
ago, and people’s tastes have changed a lot tomer’s choices clearly show they’ve learned
since then. to appreciate fish and they enjoy discovering
In large part, chefs are responsible for the new ways to prepare it.
turnaround. In the early 1980s, the selection Who would have thought that marinated
and quality of fish left much to be desired. or raw fish dishes (such as sushi) would
But the chefs of the day were travellers, curi- become so fashionable? And then there are
ous and innovative. Theideas of diversityand the health benefits of eating fish, for their be overcooked. If fish is cooked too much,
being pioneers were firmly anchored in our positive role in our diet is being increasingly its moisture evaporates and it quickly
mindset. We were the first to demand fresh recognized and appreciated. But for me, the becomes dry.
fish and to present it in an original manner. fruits of earth and sea are not medicines or So let us turn fearlessly to fish. It’s easy to
Atlantic Salmon with
Mixed Vegetables and Ginger
By Anne Desjardins
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 8 minutes
1 large carrot, peeled and
cut in fine strips
1 medium leek, cut in fine strips
85 mL ( 3 oz.) olive oil
56 mL ( 2 oz.) heavy whipping cream
5 mL ( 1 tsp.) chopped fresh ginger
30 mL ( 2 Tbsp.) fresh lemon juice
4 Atlantic salmon fillets (150 g each)
Fresh parsley or coriander
In a small saucepan, blanche vegetables in salted boiling water, then run them
under cold water.
In a small saucepan, mix 56 mL
( 2 oz.) olive oil, cream, half the chopped
ginger and the lemon juice. Set aside.
Pour a few drops of olive oil in a nonstick pan and heat over medium heat.
When it is hot, add the 4 fillets. Sprinkle
with salt, and allow the fillets to cook over
medium heat just until the flesh becomes
opaque (about 3 minutes, depending on
the thickness of the fillets). Do not overcook. (Note: The trick to ensuring the fish
is cooked perfectly is to remove the fillets
from the heat as soon as whitish liquid
begins to appear.) Remove from heat and
Just before serving, warm the vegetables again with the remaining olive oil and
the rest of the chopped ginger.
To make the sauce, heat the olive oil,
cream, ginger and lemon juice mixture for
1 minute and add a few drops of Tabasco
sauce. Add parsley (or coriander) and salt.
To serve, lay out a quarter of the vegetables in the centre of each plate, place
one fillet on top of each and cover with
sauce. Decorate with sprigs of parsley (or
coriander). Serves 4.
And customers developed a taste for it. functional foods, as some consider them. I’m prepare, good for you and oh so delicious! C
The bias for freshness became profitable: not a nutritionist; I’m a chef. Fish simply fire
The more customers who ordered fish, my culinary imagination, and I enjoy sharing
the better the turnover, and, as an inevitable favourite new recipes. Anne Desjardins is the award-winning chef and
result, the fresher the fish became. Fishers Cooking fish is easy. It’s all about the owner of L’Eau à la Bouche, a hotel-restaurant
and wholesalers were the winners. Chefs freshness of the fish. As well, fish shouldn’t located in Sainte-Adèle, Québec.
FROM THE CANADIAN EDITION