Salmon Brandade Tartlets
By Russell Blaikie
Must Wine Bar
250 grams salmon fillet, skin removed
250 grams rock salt
Butter and flour to coat the tartlet molds
350 grams brisée pastry
500 ml milk
1 fresh bay leaf
2 cloves garlic, peeled
Few sprigs of thyme
3 white peppercorns
350 grams royal blue potatoes, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon Italian parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chives, finely chopped
Sea salt to taste
Lemon-pressed extra virgin olive oil
Sprinkle both sides of the fish with the rock salt, wrap in cling film and leave in the refrigerator for about 4 hours. Preheat oven to 200°C. Brush mini tartlet tray with butter and dust with flour. Roll the pastry out to 3 mm thick. Cut circles of the pastry, lightly spike with a fork and press into the tartlet tray. Line each tartlet with greaseproof paper, drop in some dried pulses (lentils or rice work well) and rest in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
Place tartlets into oven and bake for 15 minutes, until golden brown. Remove paper and pulses and reserve.
Wash the cured salmon in lots of cold water, chop into 2cm cubes and set aside. Combine the milk, bay leaf, garlic, thyme and peppercorns in a saucepan, and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to a slow simmer, cooking for 5 minutes so that the aromatics release their flavour into the milk.
Place the salmon into the milk and cook for 2 minutes, until the flesh begins to flake. Strain the salmon out of the milk and put to the side, reserving all the cooking liquid and garlic cloves, discarding the herbs. Return the milk and garlic to the stove. Place the diced potato into the milk and simmer 10 to 15 minutes until tender.
Strain the potato and garlic from the milk, again reserving the cooking liquid. Mash the potato and garlic, or press through a potato ricer. Flake the fish back into the potato purée, adding back some of the cooking liquid to make a soft (not wet) consistency.
Add the parsley and chives then check for seasoning, adding a little more sea salt if required. Warm the tartlet cases and spoon in the brandade mixture, drizzle with a little lemon-pressed extra virgin olive oil and serve immediately.
Makes 24 tartlets
Brandade, traditionally made with salt cod, is a rich, garlicky indulgence.
My version is lighter and uses fresh salmon that I salt for a few hours instead of the imported fish.
"recipes from Wild Water and Woodsmoke, available for purchase from The Salmon Shop"