Sunday, September 04, 2011

Orange Tea Smoked Salmon, Carrot Puree, Crispy Skin and Frizzle

I hadn't smoked anything in a while and had a nice piece of fresh salmon sitting in the fridge last Sunday. So I hatched a plan to smoke some salmon and for something a little different, I also decided to smoke some prawns. I thought the flavours would go well with a carrot puree and an orange and frizzle salad. Indeed the combination made for a tasty and colourful dish.

You will need 45 minutes and the following: 
  • 150-200g piece of salmon fillet per person (measurements are for one portion)
  • 3 large prawns
  • 3 tablespoons of soya sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • the juice of half an orange
  • 2 tablespoons of Lapsang Sou Chong (chinese smoked tea)
  • the rind of a whole orange (grated)
  • wok, stand and steamer/smoking plate (anything with holes to allow permeation of smoke)
  • 2 sticks of carrots for the puree
  • 100mls of full thickened cream (non this light stuff, if you are eating cream you might as well go the whole 9 yards)
  • 2 hand full of frizzle salad leaves
  • half an orange
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of dijon mustard
  • a handful of pistachios
1. Remove the skin of your salmon and set aside (smoked skin is not really a great texture). Marinate your salmon piece in the soya, salt, orange juice and balsamic mixture; usually before smoking, the salmon is cured in a dry mixture (3 parts salt, 1 part sugar cured about 12 hours) but I have decided to use a wet mixture (time constraint and trying something different). I used balsamic and the orange juice for a sweet and tangy balance to substitute for straight sugar. Leave this marinated for around 1.5/2 hours and pat dry before placing in your preferred smoking contraption.

2. There are commercial smoking machines that you can purchase but they are merely a box where you place tea/wood chips on the bottom, heated by an element (not too dissimilar to a pie warmer) but a wok with aluminium foil lining will do the job. Place the tea leaves, and orange rind on the bottom of your wok (the Lapsang Sou Chong tea already has a smoky flavour, using this tea will give your smoked ingredients a more robust flavour); sit the plate and rack onto the wok and make sure it is secure. Also make sure you line your wok with a good cover of foil (I don't want to be blamed for any damages to woks :)
3. Cover your wok with a lid and let your salmon smoke out for around 20-25 minutes, you want it to be pink still when cutting into the salmon. The best way to test your salmon is to give it a push (much like a steak) it should have a bit of give. The prawns should only sit in the smoke for around 10 minutes...while you wait you can salt the salmon skin you put aside earlier and fry it on a pan on medium heat until crispy (the salt will help draw moisture away from the skin and help with the crispening process). Place the skin on a paper towel and drain the excess oil.

4. Meanwhile roughly dice your carrots into 2 cm cubes and place in a saucepan and combine with the cream. You want this to be a soft boil, as gentle as possible while cooking the carrots; a hard boil you result in curdled cream (not really nice). Remember to add salt and pepper to season. 

5. The carrots should be done about the same time as the salmon, it doesn't have to be mushy mess but just break when you squeeze the chunks. Place your carrots in a hand blender container, blend and add a knob of butter and season to taste...

6. The salad is straight forward; wash and dry your frizzle and place in a salad bowl. Cut your orange into small cubes and mix with the frizzle. In a separate bowl, mix your mustard and olive oil and of course salt and pepper to season and pour the mixture into your salad bowl with the frizzle leaves and mix. Add the pistachios as a final touch for a bit of crunch.

7. Plate everything as you like. I like to place the puree first and place everything else around and build the plate upwards, making sure the salmon skin does not touch the puree to ensure its crispiness is retained.


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Crispy Munchies said...

Yup, that Crispy Munchies sandwich is making me hungry.
Oh my...I could really go for some fresh baked ciabatta and delicious pesto smothered seafood right now.

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