Rachel Allen was brought up in Dublin and left home at eighteen to study at the world-famous Ballymaloe Cookery School. Rachel is now a busy ...
500 g floury potatoes
salt and fresh ground black pepper
225 g smoked salmon
3 tblsp olive oil
1 red onion (peeled and finely chopped)
2 tblsp finely chopped chives
1 tblsp capers (drained and chopped)
good squeeze of lemon juice
1 egg (beaten)
75 g breadcrumbs
15 g butter
Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F/Gas 7) and grease a small baking tray with olive oil.
Fill a large saucepan with water, then add the potatoes and a good pinch of salt. Bring to the boil for 10 minutes, then pour all but about 4cm (1½in) of the water out of the pan and cook the potatoes on a very low heat for another 20–30 minutes until a skewer goes in easily. Peel them while they are still hot and mash immediately, either by hand or using the paddle attachment in an electric food mixer, until they are free of lumps.
Meanwhile, as the potatoes cook, place the smoked salmon on the baking tray. If it is pre-sliced, simply put the slices one on top of the other. Drizzle the salmon with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, then bake in the oven for 6–8 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Put the mashed potato, onion, chives, capers, lemon juice, egg and breadcrumbs into a large mixing bowl. Roughly tear the smoked salmon into smaller pieces and add to the mix. Use a spoon to stir everything together – the salmon will break up further as you mix. Season with salt and pepper.
Shape the mixture in to six patties, each about 8cm (3in) wide and 2cm (¾in) thick. The uncooked fish cakes can be prepared up to this point in advance and either frozen or kept in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
To cook, pour the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a large frying pan on a medium heat and add the butter. When the butter has melted and starts to foam, add the fish cakes and fry for 3–5 minutes on each side or until golden brown and crispy. Serve with a green salad, lemon wedges and a dollop of tartare sauce or mayonnaise.