Salmon with beurre blanc and dill

‘Beurre Blanc’ translated from French means ‘white butter’ and this is an excellent sauce to serve with a wide range of fish and seafood. This sauce also pairs well with chicken.

This sauce is not the easiest to make as it is an ‘emulsion’, combining two ingredients that do not always happily combine! The key to success is to whisk the sauce with a balloon whisk frequently and to only warm the sauce very gently.


  • 2- 3 thick salmon fillets
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill to garnish
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the sauce

  • 1 small, finely chopped onion
  • Juice from two medium lemons
  • 1/2 teacup dry white wine (Sauvignon Blanc or similar)
  • 1/2 teacup double cream
  • 1/2 teacup cold unsalted butter cut into small cubes
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Heat the oven to 220ºC
  2. Prepare the salmon. Arrange on a piece of cooking parchment on a baking sheet, skin side down. Season the fish well and cover the top of each piece with a little olive oil.
  3. Bake the salmon in the oven for about 15 minutes – but check after 10 minutes.

While the salmon is cooking make the sauce

  1. Place the chopped onion, lemon juice and the ½ teacup of wine into a sauce pan.
  2. Heat the mixture gently for 6- 7 minutes until it has reduced in volume and is thicker in consistency.
  3. Reduce the heat. Gently whisk in the cream using a balloon whisk.
  4. Continue to whisk the sauce as you slowly add the butter- a few small cubes at a time.
  5. Once all the butter has been added, season the sauce well and stir in the chopped dill.. Remove the sauce from the heat and cover until you are ready to serve.

The classic accompaniments to this dish are small new potatoes and a selection of green vegetables.