- 2 cups pomegranate juice
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 ounce balsamic vinegar
- Splash of cooking oil (I prefer a canola/olive oil blend)
- 6 ounce salmon filet, skin on (many local farmers’ markets offer sustainably caught wild salmon this season, as do Whole foods Markets and other specialty grocers)
- Kosher salt and freshly black ground pepper, to taste
- 1 large sprig fresh rosemary
- 1/4 pound unsalted butter, cut into medium dice
- 1 delicata squash, halved lengthwise and cleaned of seeds and strings, then sliced into very thin half moons
- 1 small apple, sliced but unpeeled (I like the Sierra Beauty or Pink lady varieties), cut into thin slices
- 1/2 strip bacon, cut into small to medium dice
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/2 ounce real maple syrup
- handful of pomegranate seeds, for garnish
For the pomegranate agrodolce (Italian for “sour and sweet”), heat the honey in a small saucepan. When the honey starts to bubble up throughout, add the pomegranate juice and balsamic vinegar, then lower the heat to a simmer and continue to cook the sauce until it has been reduced to the consistency of a warm honey. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 500°F. On the stovetop, heat an oven-proof sauté pan large enough to fit the entire salmon filet. Liberally salt the skin of the salmon, and salt and pepper the flesh of the fish, as well. Add the oil to the sauté pan and, just as it starts to smoke, add the salmon, skin side down. Sear the skin side only of the salmon for 30 seconds, then transfer the salmon (still in the pan) to the oven. (If your oven has a convection fan, definitely utilize that for this recipe, but it is not necessary.)
Roast the salmon in the oven until rare/ medium rare—without turning. Once the fish is rare to medium rare (approximately 6 minutes), return the salmon (still in the same pan) to the stovetop. Immediately add the butter and rosemary sprig to the pan. Once the butter melts, continue to spoon the rose- mary sprig and butter over the fish until it is golden brown all around the outside.
While the salmon is roasting in the oven, prepare the squash and apples with bacon. Heat a sauté pan, then add a splash of the cooking oil. Season the sliced squash and apples with salt and pepper and sauté with the diced bacon until all three are nice and cara- melized. Add the butter and the maple syrup. Remove from the heat, but keep warm.
Arrange the squash, apples and bacon on each plate, sprinkle with pomegranate seeds, then place the roasted salmon on top (skin side down). Drizzle the pomegranate agro- dolce around the plate and spoon a tablespoon or so of the rosemary brown butter from the roasting pan over the fish.
About this recipe
Recipe by Chef Todd Shoberg
Chef Todd Shoberg is executive chef of Piatti Ristorante in Mill Valley and culinary director of the Piatti group of seven restaurants. A dedicated farmers’ market shopper, Shoberg plans his menu specials daily, according to the seasons. As you can see in this recipe, he allows the ingredients shine, but his culinary skills take even the best of what nature, and our farmers, ranchers, fishermen, cheesemakers and other local food producers provide, to another level. Shoberg’s dedication to local and seasonal extends even to large parties hosted in Piatti Mill Valley’s beautiful new Bay View Room with views of Mt. Tamalpais and Richardson Bay. And you can kick up your heels on the dance floor after! Piatti.com/MillValley