As many seafood-loving French cooks know, there's no better way to retain the flavor and succulence of a fresh fish fillet than by steaming it in the microwave. (Of course, getting a French cook to admit it is another story.) Peppery watercress in the creamy sauce balances the sharpness of the lemon juice-steamed salmon.
1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup Chardonnay or other dry white wine
1/4 cup minced shallots
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup 1% low-fat milk
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup finely chopped trimmed watercress
4 (6-ounce) salmon fillets (about 1 inch thick)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 medium lemon)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Watercress sprigs (optional)
Lemon wedges (optional)
How to Make It
Combine first 4 ingredients in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, until reduced to 3/4 cup (about 20 minutes). Discard bay leaf. Combine milk and cornstarch, stirring with a whisk. Add to broth mixture; bring to a boil. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in watercress; cook for 30 seconds. Keep warm.
Arrange the salmon fillets in a single layer in an 11 x 7-inch baking dish, and sprinkle with lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap, and vent. Microwave at high 4 1/2 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Place 1 fillet on each of 4 plates; top each serving with 1/4 cup sauce. Garnish with watercress sprigs and lemon wedges, if desired.