Morton's Restaurant Group, Inc. owns and operates Morton's of Chicago, a high-end steakhouse restaurant chain aimed at a business clientele, and Bertolini's Authentic Trattorias, a smaller chain offering Italian specialties in a casual dining atmosphere. At the end of 1998 Morton's Restaurant Group owned and operated 43 Morton's of Chicago and 12 Bertolini's units. All Morton's of Chicago restaurants were similar in style, concept, and decor, and were located in retail, hotel, commercial, and office building complexes in major metropolitan areas and urban centers. Catering primarily to business-oriented clients, Morton's of Chicago had an average per person check of about $65 in 1998. The Bertolini's restaurants offered white tablecloth service, with an average per person check of about $20. Morton's Restaurant Group also held a minority of stock in two other restaurant chains, Mick's and Peasant.

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Salmon with Beurre Blanc Sauce



SALMON with Beurre Blanc Sauce
Morton's Steakhouse Copycat Recipe

Serves 6

Salmon:
vegetable oil cooking spray
6 (8-10 oz.) salmon fillets, with skin, if possible
1/3 cup vegetable oil, such as canola or safflower
1 tablespoon seasoned salt
3 lemons, halved, for garnish
1 1/2 cups beurre blanc (recipe below)

Beurre Blanc Sauce:
(Makes about 2 cups)
1 teaspoon clarified butter or olive oil
3/4 heavy cream
1 large shallot, minced (about 1/4 cup)
1/3 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
freshly ground white pepper

Preheat the broiler or prepare a charcoal or gas grill. Lightly spray the grill rack with vegetable oil cooking spray. The coals or heating element should be medium-hot. Lightly brush both sides of the salmon fillets with oil and then season both sides lightly with seasoned salt. (If using the oven, broil the salmon, skin side down, about 3 inches from the heat source for about 5 minutes.) Slide a spatula between the skin and fish and turn the fish over. Broil the salmon for 3 to 5 minutes longer, or until opaque and beginning to flake. If grilling, place it on the grate, skin side down, for about 5 minutes. Turn and grill for 3 to 5 minutes more.

Beurre Blanc sauce:  In a medium saucepan, heat the clarified butter over medium-low heat. Add the shallot and sauce for 2 to 3 minutes, or until it softens without coloring. Add the wine, raise the heat to medium-high, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the wine reduces and the liquid coats the bottom of the pan. Add the cream and simmer, stirring often, for 5 to 7 minutes, or until reduced by half. Reduce the heat to low and begin adding the butter, a tablespoon at a time, whisking after each addition. Do not allow the cream to boil once the butter is added. Serve each fillet garnished with a lemon half and the beurre blanc sauce on the side.

Notes: Beurre blanc is a standard cream sauce used in a number of Morton's recipes. It's a French-style sauce, easy to make and endlessly versatile. Cooking the wine until it nearly evaporates adds great flavor to the sauce, and adding the butter a tablespoon at a time turns it silken. Take your time when you make this; you will be rewarded with a smooth, satiny sauce with subtle but gorgeous flavor. They  serve it at the restaurant with salmon, and of course it's integral to Chicken Christopher and Shrimp Alexander.

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