Also get smoked trout & eel from Falise Square butchers – Gabriel Machin, who smoke both fish on the premises.
Eels were once virtually the only fresh fish available to those in the country; in the tenth century live eels were used as currency to pay rents to the Abbots of Ely. Wonder if Brakspear would take a few eels as rent from their pub tenants!
50g unsalted butter
1 tablespoon hot horseradish sauce OR 1 good teaspoon freshly grated horseradish root
1 teaspoon wholegrain mustard
300g smoked trout fillet
200g smoked eel fillets
1 tablespoon chopped chives
A little flour for dusting
Olive oil for shallow frying
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
Peel the skin from the trout fillets – the eel will already be skinless. Flake the fish into the mashed potato, watching out for any bones. Add the chives & fold the whole lot together – leave the fish in big chunks. Season to taste, but consider the saltiness of the smoked fish. Dust your hands with flour & shape the mixture into little scones.
Heat a large non-stick frying pan over a gentle heat & add a thin layer of olive oil. Add the fishcakes & fry gently over a moderate heat for 3 – 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Remove, pat dry on kitchen paper & enjoy.
In the photo the fishcake is accompanied with steamed summer vegetables & hollandaise.
For a Quick Hollandaise
Chefs muck about making reductions of vinegar for this classic sauce. Here’s a quicker, nicer & simpler recipe. Makes about 150ml.
100g unsalted butter
1 egg yolk
½ tablespoon warm water
squeeze of lemon juice
salt & cayenne pepper
Make clarified butter – melt the butter in a pan, leave to cool so just warm when added to the egg. The butter will separate; add only the clear butter, not the buttermilk that collects at the bottom of the pan. Add egg yolk to water in a bowl & whisk over a pan of hot water until lighter in colour & thickened. Remove from heat, slowly whisk in the clarified butter until all the butter is used & the sauce is think. Add the lemon juice, season & serve.