Oven Poached Salmon Fillets with Watercress Mayonnaise

35 minutes / 4 hoursServes 4
Oven-Poached Salmon Fillets with Watercress Mayonnaise


  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 4 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley, with stems
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • ⅓ c dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio
  • 4 (6 oz) salmon fillets
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • ⅛ tsp freshly ground pepper

Watercress Mayonnaise:

  • ½ c packed watercress leaves
  • ⅓ c mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp whole-grain Dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed

Our Favorite Way To Serve It Up

Slow cooking fish in an herbed liquid adds both flavor and moisture. This reliable technique is a great way to ensure it is tender and evenly cooked. This method is also a little more forgiving and results in great entertaining recipe as you can cook a larger quantity and not tend to it constantly. Salmon’s meaty texture holds up particularly well to poaching and is delectable served chilled. Here, we paired with a watercress mayonnaise; its peppery spiciness and green color are perfect complements to the fish.


Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly oil a 9x13-inch glass baking dish. (Do not use uncoated aluminum, as it could react with wine and give salmon a metallic flavor.)

Scatter shallot, parsley and thyme over bottom of baking dish. Pour in wine and 1/3 c water. Place salmon on top of shallot mixture. Season with salt and pepper. Cover tightly with aluminum foil.

Bake until salmon is barely opaque outside with a rosy center when prodded with tip of a knife, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven, uncover and let cool completely in dish. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled (cooking juices will jell), at least 4 hours or overnight.

To make watercress mayonnaise: Pulse watercress in a food processor to finely chop. Add mayonnaise, mustard and lemon juice and process to combine. Transfer to a small serving bowl, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 1 day.

Using a slotted spatula, transfer salmon to a platter. Serve chilled, with mayo passed on side.

*For more delicious recipes, visit your local store to purchase our cookbook, Cooking in Season with The Fresh Market.