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What to serve with Salmon? [Moved from General Chowhounding Topics]

I am making dinner for 4 and would like to make Salmon in white wine sauce, does any body have any recommendations as to what I can accompany the salmon with? Potatoes? Rice? Pasta?
As well suggestions on a good appetizer to start with and dessert?

I will be cooking for a chef so I would like to get the pairings right? and hopefully impress!!

THanks for you help!!

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  1. Salmon is a rather flavourful fish, I'd suggest something seasonal, a Vegetable Ragout or roasted veggies perhaps? When I'm making it for the family on a weeknight it's served with roasted potatoes and steamed broccoli... but then you have to "know your audience" and mine are 19mo., 3yrs and 6 yrs. Sorry I don't think I'm being much help... hopefully some of the more seasoned pros will have better ideas... :)

    1. I think it depends on the seasonings of the salmon. If I marinate salmon in an Asian sauce, I'll make a sesame pasta or Asian flavored rice. If it's a more "classic" dish (which may be the case with your white wine sauce), then a rice dish with a comparable herb would be good. Maybe something simple in a French bistro style.
      I also like to pair couscous with salmon.

      1 Reply
      1. re: perk

        OH yeah !!! Dry-ish rice pilaf sided with green beans/garlic/Hoisin sauce. Creme caramel for dessert. Do not forget the champagne & chocolates for the dessert dessert.

      2. My favorite sides for salmon are lentils and sauteed spinach. The flavors and textures play very well together.

        2 Replies
        1. re: pikawicca

          Yes, yes, yes. Why don't more people serve lentils or other legumes with salmon? The first time I had it, I was an instant convert. And you're so right about the spinach! What a perfectly beautiful plate!
          Since then, I've started serving more legumes with fish and found the combination to be so good. Fava beans are especially good with tuna. I had limas with fried grouper at Emeril's Delmonico in New Orleans that was just perfect.

          1. re: MakingSense

            I had a salmon and chickpea dinner at a restaurant in Montreal, they go very well together.

        2. I serve it with just about anything but potatoes. Most frequently its a rice dish - a lemon broccoli or asparagus risotto, an herbed rice pilaf, or something along those lines. If I do a pasta, its usually something fairly light in sauce with perhaps some veggies for color. Then I add a veggie of some sort - love roasted veggies.

          1. Hello, Sharksgirl!
            Recently, we have been enjoying quinoa: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quinoa
            It is easy to prepare. Rinse well, water2:quinoa1 ratio. We use chicken stock in place of water, add a tad of butter for even more flavor, and cook as you would rice for about 10-15 minutes on very low heat. It is different and loaded with nutrients.
            You can also serve Israeli couscous, which is very pretty. The balls look like tapioca balls, but this is actually a pasta. It is also very easy to prepare and will absorb any seasoning you wish. Cook as you would small pasta; it cooks very quickly.
            I would also suggest a green salad and something fruity, perhaps cut-up crispy Asian pears.
            With salmon, imagine the colors of your final plate. The salmon is gorgeous, so you can plan your dinner accordingly.

            1. A simple garlic, lemon asparagus. Nothing more.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Deepster

                Second asaparagus. Always work well with salmon (and most dishes anyway)

                If you serve potatoes (mashed or roasted), you can add some dill to complement the salmon. Don't forget some baguette or bread for soaking up the lovely wine sauce!

                1. re: kobetobiko

                  i like dill with salmon, but it's sort of predictable.

                  tarragon would be perfect with the salmon & white wine...and maybe do some roasted fennel to mirror the licorice note...?

              2. I have to jump on the less-than popular potato bandwagon. Red B's, boiled and dressed with dilled butter are yummy with salmon. Throw in a couple cornichons on the side to cut the fattiness of salmon, and it's a nice balance. Green salad of course.

                Appetizers? My feeling would be to make a roe spread like the Finns. do. If you can't get Baltic herring roe ( and who can?) some flying fish roe from the Asian market works well. Blend with some finely (really...go nuts on the term "finely") minced onion and sour cream, then spread on rye bread and top with a t-h-i-n slice of cucumber. Fresh, and an echo of what's to come for the main course.

                Dessert...I'd go for some sort of fruit fool, as it's light, acidic enough with the fruit, and generally palate cleansing unless a too-heavy hand is used with the whipped cream. Cranberry or raspberry fool would be nice with the salmon.


                2 Replies
                1. re: cayjohan

                  i love the idea of the fool for dessert...i'm thinking blood orange. [the flavor would be a great complement to my earlier suggestions for tarragon & fennel...]

                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                    ok, i'm obsessed with the blood orange idea now, partially because i'm into seasonal ingredients. for dessert, you could also do a vanilla bean creme brulee or light cheesecake served with blood orange sorbet.

                    re: the side dishes, i agree with earlier posters that lentils and spinach are wonderful accompaniments, and i also love roasted potatoes with salmon. much more so than rice, and definitely over pasta.

                2. Orzo is my idea of the best salmon accompaniment. Along with that, creamed spinach or an asparagus salad.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Sharuf

                    Thanks everyone for the help, I had a very successful dinner :)

                    1. re: Sharksgirl

                      Oh, please give us some details! What did you make?

                      I'm glad it went well!

                    2. re: Sharuf

                      I like orzo too, with some herbs, including sage.

                    3. Use bulgur instead of white rice: just as easy (even easier) to cook as white rice, but more flavor to match the salmon and much better nutritionally.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Karl S

                        I make a parmesan risotto and grilled asparagus