Poached Salmon Stew With Fennel, Leek and Hungarian Paprika

Serves 4

Fish fumet

4 pounds heads and bones from king salmon

Water

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 medium onions, peeled and very thinly sliced

1/2 small fennel bulb, very thinly sliced

2 leeks, thinly sliced

30 white peppercorns

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

2 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley

2 bay leaves

2 cups dry white wine

Salmon

3 leeks, white and light-green parts only

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, finely sliced

2 baby fennel bulbs, trimmed and cut in wedges

2 baby carrots, peeled and sliced on bias

1 celery stalk, peeled and sliced on bias

1/2 teaspoon each hot and sweet Hungarian paprika, ground

1 teaspoon Hungarian sweet paprika flakes

4 cups fish fumet

2 teaspoons coarse salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

11/2 pounds salmon filet, skin removed and cut into 1-inch cubes

1 bunch land cress, washed and picked

1. Cut fish heads and bones into 4-inch pieces. Cover with cold water; soak 1 hour, changing water twice.

2. In a large stockpot set over medium heat, add oil, onions, fennel, leeks, peppercorns, salt, parsley and bay leaves. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook until vegetables are soft but not browned, 4 minutes.

3. Transfer heads and bones to the stockpot; discard water. Stir periodically until bones (and flesh around bones) turn white, about 12 minutes. Add wine and 6 cups water; bring to a boil over high heat. Boil fumet 10 minutes, skimming off foam. Off heat, let rest 10 minutes.

4. Strain fumet through a fine-mesh sieve, pressing firmly to extract as much of the flavorful liquid as possible. In a clean saucepan over high heat, boil fumet liquid until reduced to 4 cups.

5. For salmon: Slice leeks crosswise into 1/4-inch coins.

6. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add leeks, garlic, fennel, carrots and celery. Cook until vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add paprikas; saute to release aromas. Add fumet, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil; lower heat and simmer 15 to 20 minutes.

7. Turn off heat; add salmon pieces, seasoned with salt and pepper, and land cress. Poach until just cooked through, about 3 minutes.

-- Lizzie Binder, "Top Chef: Last Chance Kitchen"