Smoking salmon is a great way of trapping all the goodness in salmon (particularly the omega-3 fatty acids) whilst giving it a warm smoky flavour. Salmon fillets are readily available and can be found smoked in a variety of flavours and styles. Salmon is either smoked cold (which doesn’t result in it being cooked) or hot smoked which combines smoking with cooking the salmon. Many smoked varieties are available in fish mongers and supermarkets – for something really special try visiting specialist salmon suppliers online where you’ll find superb artisan-smoked salmon.
Hot smoked salmon, which as mentioned is already cooked, is perfectly chopped into small pieces and mixed with a green salad or pasta. Most shop-bought smoked salmon fillets however are cold smoked and require further cooking. There are many great recipes for salmon fillets involving baking, frying or poaching your fillets. Here are some interesting ideas for baking salmon that are simple and rewarding:
- Baked salmon fillet with green pesto served with penne pasta is a straightforward but delicious recipe for those looking to try something new. Simply coat the fillet with pesto then wrap it in foil and bake for 20 minutes, cooking the pasta whilst you wait. You can chop up the fillet once it has cooked and mix with the pasta or simply serve it beside with a fresh salad.
- A more Mediterranean take on baking salmon which combines the rich flavour of salmon with simple ingredients involves white wine, mint leaves, lemon juice and garlic. Create a ‘parcel’ by wrapping the salmon and ingredients up in the foil – this prevents any of the rich juices from leaking out.
- The Chinese have a great recipe for smoked salmon involving Chinese red peppers, oranges and brandy. This recipe involves marinating the salmon overnight with the chopped up red pepper and orange, then baking in a similar way to the above recipes.
Salmon is not only good for baking but also works well poached. Using muslin or cheese cloth prevents the salmon from overcooking and allows the fish to take on board new flavours. Here are a couple of popular poaching ideas –
- Salmon is usually poached in a mixture of onions, carrots, celery and white wine giving the salmon a rich and fresh flavour. A perfect summers evening dish involves poached salmon with freshly steamed asparagus and hollandaise sauce work well.
- Another great accompaniment to poached salmon fillet is a creamy yoghurt sauce consisting of yoghurt, honey, lemon juice, dill and mustard. Mix the ingredients with the yoghurt and allow some time for the flavours to develop.
There are many more great recipes for smoked salmon fillet. You’ll quickly forget about canapés and crème cheese once you discover all the tasty dishes you can make!