Paule Caillat of Promenades Gourmandes, which offers cooking classes and market tours in Paris, suggests drinking a white wine, something slightly ‘mineral’ and dry like a Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire Valley or a Sancerre with this French Atlantic coast dish. Since "nage" means swimming in French, the recipe's name comes from the idea that the fish are 'swimming' in the aromatic poaching liquid (the equivalent of a court-bouillon). Use white fish or a variety of seafood for this light, flavorful and classic French meal. -- Yasmin Fahr
- 2 cups dry white wine
- 1 cup water
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 leeks, julienned
- 2 carrots, julienned
- ½ celery or 1 fennel, julienned
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 garlic clove, sprout removed, minced finely
- 1 shallot, minced
- A few saffron threads or a pinch of powdered saffron
- 1 bouquet garni*
- ½ cup crème fraîche
- 4 fillets of fish, salmon , white fish (such as monkfish) or seafood such as scallops, shrimp
- Parsley, chervil or chives
*Note: A bundle of herbs, parsley stems, 1 bay leaf, a few sprigs of thyme, tied together.
In a pot, bring 1 cup wine and water to a boil and cook for 3 minutes to evaporate the wine's acidity.
Over low heat, melt the butter in a pan, add the vegetables, season with salt and sweat until tender, adding the minced shallot and garlic after a few minutes.
Add half of the wine/water combination, the saffron, the bouquet garni, cook a few more minutes, then remove the bouquet garni.
Remove the vegetables, still slightly al dente, and save in a warm spot. Strain the cooking liquid into a pot.
Bring this liquid to a boil, add the crème fraîche and reduce to the desired consistency (the longer it boils, the thicker the sauce.)
Add the remaining cup wine to the pan, and, when simmering, add the fish or seafood and cook until done, which will depend on the thickness of the fillets or the seafood.
Serve the nage on a serving dish or on individual plates. Place the vegetables on the plate first, then the fish over the vegetables and top the fish with the sauce.
Garnish with parsley or chervil or chopped chives