Chef's Recipes

Confit salmon with watermelon, labne and sauce vierge

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for Confit salmon with watermelon, labne and sauce vierge

  • Serves 10
  • 1 hr 15 mins preparation
  • 10 mins cooking plus cooling

“The confit and the sauce vierge are classic elements of French cuisine, and the watermelon is the pièce de résistance – it adds a refreshing summer element.” Jérôme Trémoulet, The Hotel Windsor


  • 400 ml vegetable oil
  • 400 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 2 white peppercorns
  • 800 gm piece New Zealand king salmon, pin-boned, cut widthways into 10 pieces
  • 300 gm seedless watermelon, cut into 2cm-thick batons
  • 100 gm labne, coarsely broken
  • To serve: toasted slivered almonds (optional)
Sauce vierge
  • 2 ripe Roma tomatoes, scored
  • 150 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 100 ml lemon juice
  • ½ cup each chervil and flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped (loosely packed)
  • ⅓ cup chives, finely chopped (loosely packed)
  • ¼ cup basil, thinly sliced (loosely packed)
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped


  • 1
    Line the base of a large saucepan large enough to fit salmon in a single layer with baking paper. Add oils, bay leaves, peppercorns and 3 tsp sea salt flakes and heat to 80C. Season salmon to taste, place skin-side down in pan and cook until medium rare (4-5 minutes). Remove from oil with a slotted spoon, carefully remove skin (discard) and cool to room temperature (15-20 minutes).
  • 2
    For sauce vierge, blanch tomato until skins split, refresh, peel, remove seeds. Finely chop, combine with remaining ingredients in a bowl, season to taste.
  • 3
    Divide salmon, watermelon and labne between plates, drizzle with sauce vierge, season to taste, serve scattered with almonds.


This recipe is from the January 2011 issue of .
Drink Suggestion: 2010 Yering Station Fumé Blanc Drink suggestion by Jérôme Trémoulet