Potted Salmon Pate with Pea Mousse, Pickled Cucumber, Salmon Roe and Sourdough Croutons

Niamh's starter recipe from her Finale menu


  • salmon paté:
  • 500 g fillet of salmon
  • 200 g smoked salmon
  • 200 ml fish stock
  • 50 ml dry white wine
  • 1 bulb of fennel
  • 3 shallots
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 100 g cream cheese
  • a sprig of thyme
  • 100 ml double cream, lightly whipped
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 sheets of leaf gelatine - dr oetker standard ones. colourless
  • pea mousse:
  • 400 g peas (frozen will do)
  • 1 handful of fresh mint leaves
  • 4 sheets of leaf gelatine - dr oetker standard ones. colourless
  • 125 ml cream, whipped to soft peaks
  • a small amount of wasabi paste
  • salt and pepper
  • pickled cucumber:
  • 1 whole cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 50 ml chardonnay vinegar
  • 30 g salt
  • 600 ml water
  • 4 black peppercorns
  • 1/2 tsp of caraway seeds, toasted
  • 1/2 tsp of mustard seeds, toasted
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 sprig of fresh tarragon
  • to finish:
  • 1 or 2 day old sourdough baguette (thin one) a thin long sourdough baguette
  • 2 tsp pink salmon roe
  • 1 tsp caviar
  • peas shoots
  • a selection of miniature edible flowers
  • a sprig of dill
  • some flakes of fresh salmon reserved from early poached salmon


  1. Salmon Paté:
  2. Soak gelatine leaves in cold water until softened, about three or four minutes.
  3. Roughly slice the fennel and the shallots and place into a medium pan with the fish stock, the white wine, the bay leaves, thyme and the fresh salmon. Add a little cold water if the liquid does not cover the fish. Bring up to the boil and simmer gently, depending on the thickness of the fish for about 5 minutes.
  4. Take off heat and allow to cool slightly in the mixture until cool enough to handle. Discard the fennel, bay leaves, peppercorn and thyme, but reserve the liquid.
  5. Flake the poached fish into a food processor along with a little of the poaching liquor until you have a smooth paste.
  6. Add the smoked salmon and a couple of tablespoons of the cream cheese and blend again until smooth.
  7. Separately heat up about 50ml of the poaching if it has gone cold. Squeeze the excess water out of the gelatine and add to the heated up poaching liquor. Whisk in and then add to the salmon pate in the food processor and blend again until totally incorporated. Fold in whipped cream and mix well. Adjust seasoning.
  8. Pipe the mixture slightly above halfway up the kilner jars. Put in fridge to cool and assist the setting process.
  9. Pea Mousse:
  10. Soak gelatine leaves in a small bowl of cold water for 3 minutes, or until softened.
  11. Add the peas and 50ml of water to a medium saucepan and bring to the boil.
  12. Cook for a minute, or until bright green.
  13. Add the mint and puree in a food processor until smooth.
  14. While the mixture is still hot, remove the gelatine leaves from the water, squeeze out any excess moisture and add to the purée and blend again.
  15. Pass through a fine sieve or chinoise.
  16. Carefully add a small amount of wasabi paste (it is very powerful…you only need a very small amount a couple of pea sized dots) and stir through. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  17. Set aside to cool completely.
  18. When the purée is cold, blend in the whipped cream.
  19. Pipe on top of the salmon pate in the kilner jars and leave in fridge to cool and set until ready to serve.
  20. Cucumber Pickle:
  21. Heat up the 600ml of water to boiling point and add the peppercorns, caraway seeds, mustard seeds, bay leaf and tarragon. As soon as the water boils, remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  22. When the mixture is cool, add the vinegar to the pan.
  23. Place the sliced cucumbers into a medium sized bowl and cover with the vinegar mix. Set aside until required.
  24. To serve:
  25. Heat the oven to 170C.
  26. Slice the sourdough baguette as thinly as you can and place on a baking tray and put into the oven to dry out and become a lightly toasted colour (about ten minutes but keep an eye on them).
  27. Decorate the top of the pate and pea mousse with some salmon roe, a little caviar and some of the reserved flaked poached salmon. Place a small sprig of dill and an edible flower on top and close the kilner jar.
  28. Place on plate with 2/3 sourdough croutons and a little of the pickled cucumber.
  29. Serve.

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