Sacred Ground: Herb-Crusted Salmon with Orange Basil Sauce

Chef Horst Pfeifer shares this salmon recipe from his New Orleans restaurant, Bella Luna.

| March/April 2000

Serves 6

1 cup dehydrated onion
1 cup onion rings, about 1 medium onion
1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
6 pieces of salmon, 7 ounces each
3 egg whites, slightly beaten
6 teaspoons canola oil

Blend the dehydrated onion, onion rings, bread crumbs, and salt and pepper; stir in the herbs. Dip one side of each piece of salmon in the egg whites and then press into the crumb mixture. In a nonstick pan over medium high heat, sear the salmon in the oil, crust side down, until the crust is golden brown; then turn and sear the other side; finish in the oven at 375°F for 10 minutes or until the salmon is opaque in the center.

Orange Basil Sauce

1/3 cup cream
1/4 cup vermouth
11/2 cups fresh squeezed orange juice with pulp
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil

In a small saucepan over medium heat, reduce the cream, vermouth, and orange juice, stirring constantly, until only 1/2 cup of liquid remains. Whisk in the butter and season with salt and pepper. Add the basil immediately before serving.

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