Fiddlehead Season

A Velouté Sauce of Fiddleheads

Spectacular over fresh, pan seared halibut, this sauce has a flavor unlike any other. It’s a take on a classic beurre blanc, which has never been known for its lack of butter. If you want to reduce the fat, try experimenting by using a good chicken stock instead of cream or try finishing with natural, creamy Greek yogurt and cutting out the butter and cream altogether. Recipe after the jump…

3-4 medium shallots, roughly chopped (about 100g)
1 tsp olive oil
250ml white wine
150ml white wine vinegar
1 Bay Leaf
1 tsp Black Peppercorns
350 g cold butter (cubed)
250ml cream 35%
1 tbsp lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
¼ tsp salt
100g blanched Fiddleheads

– In a medium sized saucepot, sweat the shallots and deglaze the pot with white wine and vinegar. Add the peppercorns and bay leaf and reduce the liquid by 80% on a low simmer.

– Whisk in the butter, one cube at a time—once the butter has been fully incorporated, add the cream.

– Reheat gently, add lemon and Fiddlheads and blend until smooth. Strain through a fine sieve and discard solids. Season to taste and add some finely minced fresh chives to finish.

– Since it’s a shame not to enjoy the full texture or be visually fascinated by the whole, coiled fiddlehead, I always serve this sauce with some simply sautéed fiddleheads.

– With perhaps the smallest amount of garlic (depending on your preference), toss blanched fiddleheads in some butter or olive oil and finish with a squeeze of lemon and good sea salt.