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Shaved Fennel, Lemon, and Arugula Salad with Pan-Seared Salmon

Recipe adapted from Salmon, by Diane Morgan. Diane comments about this light, lovely recipe: “I've paired salmon and fennel several times in this book and there is a reason for it: They make a gorgeous marriage of taste, texture, and color. Here the fennel is thinly sliced, partnered with peppery arugula, and tossed with a lemon vinaigrette. A quickly pan-seared salmon fillet sits on top of a mound of this slaw-like salad. A quick garnish with fennel fronds and you have a main-course salad worthy of company, yet simple and easy enough for a family meal.”

Suggested wine pairing: Champagne, domestic sparkling wine, or Rhône white.
Yield: Serves 4
Total Time: 25 min
Prep: 15 min
Cook: 10 min
Additional:
Ingredients
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
Freshly ground pepper
3 cups thinly sliced fennel bulb (fronds reserved)
2 bunches arugula (about 1/2 pound total), stemmed
Preparation
1.  Make vinaigrette: In a small jar with a tight-fitting lid, combine 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, lemon zest and juice, garlic, sugar, salt and lots of pepper. Several good grinds of pepper make the vinaigrette taste robust, a perfect complement to the fennel. Cover tightly and shake vigorously to blend. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Set aside.
2.  Chop the fennel fronds and measure out 1/3 cup. In a large bowl, combine the fennel, 1/4 cup of the fennel fronds (saving the rest for garnish) and the arugula. Toss lightly to mix and set aside.
3.  Season the salmon on all sides with a little salt and pepper. Place a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat.
4.  When the skillet is hot, add the 3 tablespoons of olive oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the salmon and cook about 4 minutes. Carefully turn the salmon and cook until the fillets are almost opaque throughout, but still very moist, or an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 125 to 130 F, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a warm plate and set aside while you toss the salad.
5.  Shake the dressing vigorously again and toss with the salad.
6.  Arrange the salad on 4 dinner plates. Place a salmon fillet in the center, garnish with the remaining fennel fronds and serve immediately.
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