Cured Salmon and Tortilla Recipe
If, like me, you’ve overindulged a bit over Christmas but are still entertaining friends and family, how about this recipe I found on the internet for something a little lighter but still worthy of gracing your lunch or supper table!!
The recipe is enough to feed 6 people and if, again, like me you don’t eat much meat this is a perfect dish for pescetarians. The dish comes in three separate parts; the cured fresh salmon, a tortilia – “potato pancake”, and a creamy dill sauce.
For the salmon
1 side of fresh salmon, pin boned with skin on
500 g (1 lb) rock salt
500 g (1 lb) Demerara sugar
25 g (1 oz) crushed black pepper
25 g (1 oz) crushed coriander seed
25 g (1 oz) crushed fennel seed
1 bunch of fresh dill, roughly chopped
For the tortilla
2 large white onions
2 tbsp olive oil
4 large potatoes, peeled and sliced
1 pinch sea salt & ground black pepper to season
For the Dill Creme
1 lemon (juice only)
300 ml (10 fl oz) double (heavy) cream
1/2 bunch fresh dill, roughly chopped
1 pinch sea salt to season
To cure the salmon, rub crushed coriander and fennel seed onto the flesh of the salmon.
Mix together salt and sugar evenly.
Take a plastic box, large enough to take the salmon, sprinkle one third of salt sugar mix into the box and then place the salmon skin side down in the box and cover it evenly with chopped dill and then cover it with the remaining salt and sugar mix.
Cover box with cling film and leave to cure in the fridge for at least 24 hours but, for a fuller flavour and depending on how well cured you like your fish, you may like to leave it there for up to 48 hours.
A short while before you’re due to serve your salmon, take it from the box and gently rinse away the salt and sugar mix under a cold tap, trying not to wash away too much of the fresh dill.
Gently pat the fish dry with a tea towel or paper towel. Brush it with olive oil, cover with cling film and return it to the fridge until it’s needed.
To make tortilla
Heat your oven to 150C/300F/Gas Mark 2.
In a heavy based saucepan with a lid cook the thinly sliced onions very slowly with a little olive oil, some pepper and salt until they are very soft but not brown.
Slice the potatoes and blanch them in a pan of salted boiling water until they’re soft, about 15 minutes. Drain then place them on paper towel to dry.
Break the eggs into a metal bowl, add the warm onions and potatoes, then season to taste with salt and ground black pepper.
Stir the eggs, rather than beat them, with the vegetables. This dish doesn’t need the eggs to be like a batter. The mix needs to have a slightly marbled effect with some of the rich yellow yolk still visible.
In a non-stick ovenproof pan, just large enough to take the tortilla mix (or perhaps two or three smaller pans if you haven’t got one large enough to take the lot!) which has been coated with a small amount of olive oil, then pour in your tortilla/vegetable mix until it reaches the top of the pan/pans.
Bake your tortilla for about 20 minutes or until it’s just cooked.
Mix the lemon juice and cream together in a saucepan and warm gently. Set aside to cool. This crème should not be boiled, just warmed through or the lemon juice and cream will separate.
To serve: thinly slice the fish diagonally trying to avoid the brown flesh near the skin. Transfer fish slices to a tray and return to the fridge.
Mix the chopped dill into the cream.
Slice tortilla into wedges.
Arrange the salmon onto a plate with a slice of warm tortilla, a spoon of dill creme, a wedge of lemon and a small side salad if you want to make the dish stretch a bit further!
Bearing in mind this dish takes 10 eggs, I’m tempted to half the ingredients for the tortilla and then serve a good side salad … it’s not that I’m tight you understand, but just thrifty shall we say!!! And, as my artistic skills aren’t too hot either, I think I’d probably slice the salmon and put it on a serving dish and, likewise, I’d just cut the tortilla into slices on a separate plate, place some salad in a bowl and then leave some small pots of the dill crème on the table so guests could help themselves.
This dish does take a little time and effort. but it’s relatively simple to do and, for a special supper or lunch it’d be well worth it!