Sunday, 19 September 2010
Salmon pudding (laxpudding)
Salmon pudding (laxpudding) is a classic Swedish dish, but maybe not as well known as I thought. I made this for my Swedish flatmate and a couple of our Swedish expat friends yesterday, and turned out that three of them actually didn't know what it was (although that didn't stop them from accepting the dinner invitation, or from stuffing themselves once the food was on the table). After a lot of discussion on from where in Sweden salmon pudding origins (the province of Halland apparently), we moved onto children's TV shows (Solstollarna and Vilse i pannkakan, no wonder our generation is a bit... confused...), politics (Swedish general election today), and how incredibly expensive the flight tickets to go home to Sweden for Christmas already are. Important stuff for expats.
Anyhow, I can't guarantee that this dish will result in meaningful (?) conversations for everyone, but it is an easy all in one pot dish, and as evidenced by yesterdays limited leftovers, quite tasty and popular.
Salmon pudding (6-8 portions)
500 g salted, cured or smoked salmon, skin- and boneless
2 tbs sugar
2 tbs salt
1.5 kg potatoes in thin slices
2 large leeks, finely chopped
1 large onion, finely chopped
1-2 dl dill, finely chopped
2 dl single cream
4 dl milk
I prefer using salted salmon, and it is very easy to make yourself. This is a fast way of curing it. However if you want to cure salmon properly to eat it without any additional cooking, you need to cure for 24-48 h in the fridge, and should then freeze it for an additional 24 h before eating it.
Mix sugar and salt and rub it in on both sides of the salmon. Place in a dish and cover with clingfilm. Either let the salmon cure for a couple of hours in the fridge, or 30 min in room temperature. The result is a firmer fish, as the salt and sugar draws out a lot of the moisture. Salted salmon fillets are also gorgeous just fried and served with boiled new potatoes and maybe a hollandaise sauce.
Butter a large ovenproof dish and layer potatoes, leeks, onions, dill and salmon. Do several layers, starting and ending with a layer of potatoes.
Beat the eggs with the milk and cream and pour into the dish. If you use smoked salmon, you might want to add some salt to the egg mixture. Grind over some black or white pepper.
Cook for around 1 h at 200C until golden brown and the potatoes are soft.
Serve with lemon wedges, clarified butter and a fresh salad. I made the salad below yesterday, it is nice and crisp.
Crisp lemony salad
1 bag of watercress, spinach and rocket
2 small little gem salad heads
1 yellow pepper, chopped
10-12 radishes, finely sliced
3 cm of a leek, finely sliced
Peel and juice from one lemon
1 tbs olive oil
1 pressed garlic clove
salt and pepper
To add some Swedish atmosphere to your dinner, or just because it is a great song, listen to Swedish band Johnossi's 'Man must dance'.