I sometimes used to make smoked salmon pâté, which is a traditional jewish recipe, as far as I know. It is made from smoked salmon (surprise) and cream cheese - very simple, really. While it tastes great, I was never entirely happy with the consistency, smoked salmon (or any fatty fish) having the tendency to turn pasty when pulsed in a food blender. In order to avoid this, I tried to make salmon pâté from fresh salmon, which I poached beforehand. It turned out very nice, chunkier and more rustic, with a fresh taste but not the least bit pasty . The smoky taste goes amiss, however.
Poached salmon pâté (makes a starter for six)
- 300g salmon fillet, without skin
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- salt and white pepper
- 1 carton cream cheese (125g)
- 1 dash cognac
- lemon juice to taste
- dill (to mix in or as a garnish)
Cut the salmon into bite-sized pieces, dress with the olive oil (I used a lemon-scented one), season with salt and pepper and steam in a steam basket until just done. Let cool a little, then finely mash up with a fork. (I was afraid that if I used the food processor I'd end up with pasty pâté again but it might work - trial and error. The pâté would turn out a lot smoother, of course). Mix with the cream cheese and season with the lemon juice, cognac and salt and pepper. Add the chopped dill if using or garnish with a sprig of dill. Chill for at least two hours. Serve with fresh crusty bread and maybe a salad of mixed green leaves, dressed with a simple vinaigrette.