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Salmon en Croute

Introduction & method

Salmon en Croute (from the French 'en croute' meaning in - pastry - crust) has been around in some form or another for centuries. Modern versions contain two fillets of salmon sandwiching a paste of spinach and cream cheese all wrapped in puff or flaky pastry. Ready-made pastry is pretty good these days, so I recommend that.

Salmon en Croute Recipe

Prep the Spinach/Cream Cheese Filling

Wash the spinach and place it in a frying pan on medium-low heat. A couple of splashes of water will stop the spinach sticking. Let the spinach cook for a few minutes until it has given up all of its moisture. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Did you know that spinach is over 90% water? It's a ridiculous thing to put in a pie, really, so when it's cool, squeeze any remaining liquid out with your hand and stir it into the cream cheese. You might want to taste the filling and add a bit of salt and possibly some lemon juice.

Prep the Salmon

Run your fingers over the salmon fillets and remove any bones. If the skin is on, you need to remove that by placing a wide, flat, sharp knife between the skin and the flesh. Hold the edge of the skin down on the chopping board and push the knife away from your fingers.

Assemble the Salmon en Croute

Sprinkle some flour on your worktop. Unroll the pastry. If it isn't pre-rolled, you'll need to roll it out with a rolling pin into a rectangle about 5mm (quarter inch) thick. Now place half of the salmon fillet(s) on the pastry. You are going to wrap the salmon/cheese/salmon sandwich in pastry like you are wrapping a gift, so use your imagination to position the stack sensibly on the pastry. Cut the corners out of the dough, lift up the sides, moisten the edges with water and press them down to seal them. I realise that was the worst description of how to wrap a parcel in the history of the universe, so take a look at the video to see how it's really done. Place the parcel in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Decorate and Bake

Heat your oven to 180°C (356°F) for a fan oven, 200°C  (392°F) for a conventional one, gas 6. Remove the pastry parcel from the fridge and paint it all over with a mixture of beaten egg and a splash of milk. You can now score any patterns you like into the pastry with the tip of a sharp knife, but be careful not to cut all the way through. Line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper or a silicon mat, place the salmon en croute on it and bake for 25 minutes, turning it round halfway through. When done, remove it from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack. You can eat the salmon en croute hot or cold, accompanied by new potatoes, green vegetables or salad.

The video above is from the Keef Cooks YouTube channel. Click here to see the video recipe of Salmon en Croute on YouTube.

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Ingredients & Info

 300 grams ready-made puff or flaky pastry
 1 egg
 a splash of milk
 400 grams salmon fillet (in 2 pieces)
 150 grams full-fat cream cheese
 100 grams spinach


Salt and lemon juice to taste.

US Customary/Imperial

Serves 4 -6
Prep time: 15 minutes.
Resting/cooling time: 1 hour.
Cooking time: 30 minutes.
Total time: 1 hour 45 minutes.