Monday, December 14, 2009

Daring Cooks: Salmon En Croute

This months Daring Cooks challenge was a choice of Beef Wellington or Salmon en Croute. So many people have been complaining that their have been a lot of fish recipes. Understandably so because there has. For us fish people that is NO problem. Besides I have already done Beef Wellington, which I am actually planning to make again on New Years Day. So for me it was an obvious choice.

My review. This is a really elegant, quick recipe that you can pull together in a short period of time to wow your dinner guests. I highly recommend this if you have company and you know they enjoy salmon. Wonderful taste.

The 2009 Daring Cooks challenge was hosted by Simone of Junglefrog Cooking. Simone chose Salmon en Croute (or alternative recipes for Beef Wellington or Vegetable en Croute) from Good Food Online.

Salmon en croute
creamcheese 6 ounces
spinach 16 ounces
Puff Pastry 1 sheet
Salmon fillet (skinless) 16 ounces
egg - 1 medium sized

I added:
the juice of half of a lemon
1 tablespoon of dill weed
2 cloves of garlic, finely minced

1.Heat the oven to 400 F. Put the cream cheese in a food processor with the spinach and whizz the lot until you have a creamy green puree. Season well.
2. Roll the pastry out so you can wrap the salmon in it completely (approx. 2-3 mm thick) and lay it on a buttered or oiled baking sheet (it will hang over the edges). Put the salmon in the middle. If it has a thinner tail end, tuck it under. Spoon half of the spinach mixture onto the salmon. (I sliced my salmon in equal parts and put the mixture between teh two fillets, laying the thick end over the thin end and the thin end over the thick end, so the parcel ended up being a uniform thickness.) Now fold the pastry over into a neat parcel (the join will be at the top, so trim the edge neatly), making sure you don’t have any thick lumps of pastry as these won’t cook through properly. Trim off any excess as you need to. Make 3 neat cuts in the pastry to allow steam to escape and make some decorations with the off-cuts to disguise the join if you like. Brush with the egg glaze.

3. Bake for 30 minutes or until the pastry is crisp and browned. To test wether the salmon is cooked, push a sharp knife through one of the cuts into the flesh, wait for 3 seconds then test it against the inside of your wrist; if it is hot, the salmon is cooked. Serve with the rest of the watercress puree as a sauce.

Shortcrust pastry

450 gr (15.8 ounces or 3.2 cups ) of plain all purpose flour
200 gr ( 7 ounce) cold butter
pinch of salt

Sift the flour into a large bowl, add the butter and rub in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. If you have a food processor you can use that.
Stir in the salt, then add 2-3 tbsp of water and mix to a firm dough. Knead the dough briefly and gently on a floured surface. Wrap in cling film and chill while preparing the filling.

For best results make sure the butter is very cold.


kat said...

That looks so beautiful!

HoneyB said...

I'm sure I would love this! Grumpy wouldn't eat it - so I would have to go with Beef Wellington but the salmon looks so good!

Barbara Bakes said...

Love how you decorated your pastry! Gorgeous!

Lynn said...

Looks yummy! I've eaten this but never made it. It sounds like an impressive dinner party dish.

Grace said...

"en croute" is a simple phrase that to me automatically indicates deliciousness. very elegant dish, lori!

Katy ~ said...

Elegant is right. This would be perfect company fare or for anyone who likes fish. You did this so beautifully that I would be tempted to try a bite!

LittleRed said...

Oh that looks just delicious. My DH would have spent all night picking for bones if I'd done Salmon....I wish I could taste yours:)

anjelikuh said...

yummy salmon on croute! the little fish in the middle looks adorable.

Lori said...

Little Red- no bones; a nice filleted, deboned piece.

Lucy..♥ said...

Lori, your salmon en croute is outstanding, certainly has the WOW factor!!!

Mary said...

This looks wonderful, Lori. You did a great job with the challenge.

Anonymous said...

So pretty! I almost wouldn't want to eat it.

Ingrid said...

I'll take fish over beef any day!

Anonymous said...

Lori, as I knew it would be,,your salmon en croute turned out magazine, picture operfect gorgeous! Well done, as my mouth waters :P

Robin Sue said...

I think this is one of the best Daring Cook's recipes yet! So pretty to look at and I bet so delicious too!