RECIPE: Festive Green Poke Bowl With Gin Cured Crumbed Salmon

I went along to the #AmaraXmas18 lunch recently and was so blown away by this light and tasty festive lunch dish that I wanted to share the recipe. Perfect for a Boxing Day lunch when no-one can face too much stodgy food after the excess of the day before!

recipe for a festive green poke bowl with home cured salmon

The festive green poke bowl contains sweet pickled cabbage, crispy fried sprout leaves, buttered greens, herbed shoestring fries and cured salmon with a pistachio crumble and sage and parsley béarnaise sauce.

It looks complicated and there are a number of steps but mostly they are not too tricky and well worth the effort.  The quantities below are for 6 people but obviously you could just double up for a bigger party.

Prep takes about 1 hour, curing time for the salmon is 2 days and cooking time is about 30 minutes. You could cut down some of the work by buying ready cured salmon and using a jar or packet mix for the béarnaise sauce.

You could also substitute the salmon for cooked mushrooms.

Cured and Crumbed Salmon 

650g sustainable smoked salmon. Ask your fishmonger to pin bone but leave the skin on.
50ml gin or vodka
50g rock salt
30g demerara sugar
1 lemon, zest and juice
2tsp black peppercorns
6 cloves
2 large bunches of dill finely chopped.

For the crumb

4tbsp hot creamed horseradish
1 small bunch of dill and 1 of tarragon
zest of 1/2 lemon
200g pistachios, blitzed to a rough crumb
fresh ground pepper

Curing the salmon
Blitz together gin, salt, sugar, lemon juice and zest, peppercorns and cloves with the dill. Cover the salmon fillet and wrap in cling film and allow to cure overnight or for 24 hours.

Then remove the cure by rinsing in cold water and place salmon on a clean tray. Then make the crumb by combining gin and horseradish - coat the salmon with this. Next, blitz together all remaining ingredients and coat the salmon. Wrap in parchment then clingfilm making sure no air can get to it. Cure in a fridge for another 24 hours or overnight then when ready to use, finely slice.

Buttered Greens

Spring greens, leaves roughly cut and steamed or pan fry with a glug of olive oil and a generous knob of butter.

Sweet Pickled green cabbage

1/2 green cabbage, shredded.
250ml white wine vinegar
250ml water
1tbsp caster sugar
1tbsp salt
1tsp coriander seeds
1tsp black peppercorns
1/2 bunch dill

Combine all ingredients apart from the cabbage and dill, and cook on a medium heat stirring. When sugar is dissolved and mix almost boiling remove from heat. Add cabbage and dill and allow to cool. Allow to "pickle" for at least an hour or overnight in the fridge if possible.

Herbed Shoestring Fries and Crispy Sprout Leaves

2 large potatoes skin on - julienne into matchsticks.
350g Brussels sprouts, leaves picked.

Heat several glugs of olive oil in a large pan and fry potatoes and sprout leaves until crisp or oven cook. When almost cooked add sprigs of thyme, sprinkle of sea salt and the zest of half a lemon.
You can keep them warm in the oven on 140 degrees celsius until ready to serve.

Bearnaise Sauce

300g butter melted
4 tbsp white wine vinegar
3 shallots finely diced
2 tbsp tarragon
2 tbsp parsley
generous sprinkle sea salt flakes
freshly ground black pepper
4 egg yolks
1 tsp lemon juice.

First clarify the butter -place in a  small pan over a medium to low heat and melt until solids separate. Remove from heat and allow to stand for several minutes then gently pour the non-solids into a separate bowl and discard the remaining solids.

Heat the vinegar, shallots, herbs and seasoning into a small pan and boil until the liquid reduces by half. Strain and allow to cool.

Beat the egg yolks, add a small splash of water then combine with the cooled vinegar and add lemon juice.

Next place the mixture in a heatproof bowl over a pan of boiling water ensuring the bowl doesn't actually touch the water. Whisk constantly until you have a rich thick sauce which has increased in volume. Remove from the heat and gradually add in the clarified butter. Add tarragon, sage and parsley or other herbs of your choice, and salt and pepper to taste.

Serve in beautiful bowls and enjoy mouthfuls of flavour and a good portion of your five a day in the meantime!

Disclaimer: Recipe supplied by Amara who also supplied a goodie bag containing products worth £100. Views and opinions remain honest and my own.

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