I used to really dislike salmon. I know, right? Weird. Its the worlds most loved and common fish isn’t it! Well I wasn’t that keen! (Apart from smoked salmon – always loved that!) Over the last couple of years though, something has changed. The more I dare myself to try it, the more I seem to like it, to the point now that I will actively seek it out on menus and at home. I still prefer it in other ways to purely fried/roasted/poached so am always trying to do something different with it. In my current phase of adoring sushi, sashimi and curing things I thought I would try a salmon tartare.
I guess people might be scared of eating ‘raw’ fish, but in fact the lemon juice in the recipe ‘cooks’ the salmon in a way, so as long as your fish is fresh and good quality there shouldn’t be any cause for concern! More traditional tartares would use parsley as the herb, but I prefer chives. paring this with some slightly acidic pickled cucumber just adds a bit of crisp clean flavour that cuts through the salmon too.
Serves 2 as a lunch or light dinner
For the salmon:
- 2 boneless salmon fillets, skin removed
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp capers – finely chopped
- 1 tbsp chives – finely chopped
- 1 small shallot, peeled and finely diced
- twist black pepper
For the cucumber:
- half a cucumber
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped and a few extra to dress the plate.
- 1 tbsp rock salt
- Firstly prepare the cucumber – peel and cut lengthways, then scoop out the seeds. Slice thinly in vertical slices on a mandolin or with a peeler.
- Layer the cucumber in a colander and cover with the salt. Leave for 1-2 hours. (this draws out some of the water in the cucumber)
- After the 1-2 hours – prepare the tartare mix. Put the lemon juice, oil, chopped capers, shallot and chives in a bowl and mix, adding a little pepper to taste.
- Prepare the salmon. Cut into about 5mm dice and place into the same bowl with the other tartare ingredients. Mix well and place in the fridge.
- Rinse the cucumber well and pat dry. Place in a bowl with the rest of the pickle ingredients and mix well. Place in the fridge alongside the salmon and leave both for about 30 minutes.
- To serve, use a cookie cutter as a mould to build the tartare, then remove. Top with a few curls of the sweet and sour cucumber.
Happy eating :)