The Crooked Billet

Salmon in Pastry with Currants, Stem Ginger & Lemon Hollandaise Cream

Serves 4

Salmon in Pastry with Currants, Stem Ginger & Lemon Hollandaise Cream

West Yorkshire 1973, we’re visiting Nana Clerehugh, Saturday teatime – a tin of John West & salad. Cadillac pink salmon – cooked in its tin. The impossible twist key that peeled round the tin. A tin of salmon was considered quite gastronomic in 1970’s Leeds, a very respectable Tombola prize. Fresh salmon was unheard of. Three decades later, we take fresh salmon for granted. Wallpaper. Wedding food. Salmon has become boring, the staple stuff of wedding receptions & regatta buffets. Here’s a fab recipe that makes salmon special again. Look out for organic salmon in the supermarkets. Ian at Machins stocks great salmon, also occasionally wild sea trout; superb in this recipe.

650g – 1kg fresh salmon

Malden salt

Freshly ground white pepper

Zest & juice of 1 lemon

2 tsp currants

2 tsp chopped stem ginger

100g butter, softened

225g short crust pastry

Egg for egg wash

Fillet, & then skin the salmon. With tweezers or pliers, remove any bones. Season each side.

Drain the stem ginger from its syrup & finely chop, mix with the softened butter, currants lemon juice & lemon zest. Spread over each fillet then sandwich the two sides together.

On a floured surface, roll out the pastry & wrap it around the salmon making a secure & tidy parcel.

Pre-heat the oven to 200°C. Place the parcel on a non-stick baking sheet, brush with egg wash.

Bake in a preheated oven for 15 minutes & then reduce the temperature to 150°C & bake for a further 30 minutes.

For the Lemon Hollandaise Cream:

150ml whipping cream

150g unsalted butter

1 egg yolk

Zest & juice of ½ lemon

Malden salt, freshly ground white pepper

Whisk the cream to soft peaks & reserve.

Melt the butter in a small saucepan.

Put yolk in a glass bowl, dribble in the melted butter vigorously whisking to emulsify. Add lemon juice, zest & season.

Fold in the whipped cream & serve immediately.