Friday, August 5, 2011

70's Restaurant Revisited - Salmon En Croute

Ahhhhhh.... pastry!!! Is there nothing that can't be enhanced by being enveloped in a golden, puffy shell of buttery goodness? I will happily knock up a batch of shortcrust pastry, however I think I join most people in being a bit daunted by making my own puff pastry and opt for buying those super convenient sheets that can be pulled out of the freezer on a whim.

Recently at the Good Food and Wine Show in Sydney I was lucky enough to come across a producer of beautiful pre made pastry called Careme. Based in the Barossa Valley, they produce a variety of gorgeous hand made pastry varieties, rolled and ready to use. The quality will knock your socks off - like nothing you will find on the supermarket shelf. I am a complete convert to their gorgeous products and although they cost more and may be a bit harder to find, they are definitely worth it for the top notch results they give. To find out how to get your hands on beautiful Careme pastry, check out their website for more information:

Today's recipe used a sheet of Careme puff pastry and is actually what I would classify as a super retro and frankly out of fashion pastry dish - up there with Vol au Vents! But let's be honest here, who doesn't still love a Vol au Vent? I decided to totally embrace the 70's trend for wrapping things in pastry and thought I would resurrect an old 70's restaurant/dinner party favourite - Salmon En Croute. Salmon, pastry.... what's not to like? I have taken this dish and added a delicious creamy cauliflower puree to the mix and also included some lovely fresh herbs. The result is a delicious, easy dish that looks a bit more posh and technically difficult than it actually is. So, pretend it's 1975 and get your Salmon En Croute on!

Layering the ingredients.........

Wrapping, glazing and finishing with poppy seeds........

Fresh from the oven, ready to be plated up.......

Salmon En Croute
with sugar snap peas and asparagus

You will need: 1 large fillet of salmon (about 500g), 1 sheet puff pastry about 30cm x 30cm. (I use Careme brand but any kind will work) 1 egg, 1 teaspoon water, 1/2 whole Cauliflower, 3 tablespoons butter, 2 tablespoons cream, 3 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese, 2 tablespoons chopped continental parsley, 1 tablespoon chopped dill, 2 tablespoons chopped chives, 1 teaspoon finely chopped thyme or lemon thyme, 1 tablespoon poppy seeds, salt and pepper.

Method: First, make the cauliflower puree. Cut the cauliflower into florets and boil in salted water until soft. Drain well and puree. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter, cream, parmesan and season very generously with salt and pepper. Mix well and set aside to cool.

Carefully remove any bones from the salmon using a pair of tweezers. Now remove the skin and season the salmon with salt and pepper.

Preheat the oven to 220C. Mix all of the herbs together in a small bowl.

Line a tray with baking paper and place the sheet of puff pastry on the tray. Spoon the cooled cauliflower puree on to the pastry and sprinkle half of the herbs over the top. Now place the salmon on top of the puree and sprinkle the rest of the herbs over the fish. Put the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter in small bits over the fish. Season again with salt and pepper.

Whisk the egg in a bowl with 1 teaspoon of water. Fold the pastry until it meets in the middle and pinch the edges together well (you don’t want it to pop open during cooking) Do the same with the ends. Brush the parcel with the egg mixture and sprinkle the poppy seeds over the top. Put a few holes in the pastry with a knife to let any steam escape while the parcel cooks.

Bake at 220C for about 20-25 minutes until the pastry is puffed and golden. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before cutting into slices and serving.

Serves 2-4 people



  1. Dear GG,

    I made this last Friday night and it was just lovely, even though I wasn't able to get hold of the quality puff.

    I really think one of the big stars of the show was the cauli puree. It was soooooooooooo delicious! Truly! It was such a revelation. I am going to use it in place of bechamel in other recipes.

    We had some leftovers and the Salmon en croute was just as yum chilled for lunch the next day.

    Nice one! x

  2. So glad that it worked so well AND made good leftovers! And yes creamy cauliflower puree has a myriad of uses. Love GG