With homemade puff pastry around a salmon and cream cheese filling this salmon en croute is a great recipe for a date night or special occasion. If you like indulgent fish recipes then this is perfect.
This week my Inspired by Masterchef challenge involved not only making salmon en croute for the first time, but making my own puff pastry for the first time too. And I have to say, I am seriously impressed with myself.
The pastry actually had little layers in it - just like in real puff pastry! I'd always heard that puff pastry was too much effort and that there was almost no point making it. It would be nowhere near as good as shop-bought, and you'd have wasted lots of time over it.
Is it Hard to Make your Own Puff Pastry?
Well, it turns out I was wrong, conned, deceived because it is possible to do it yourself. It might take a couple of hours if you keep resting the pastry. But, the smug self-satisfied, I did it feeling is definitely worth the effort. Not that I'm saying you should never buy a block of ready-made puff pastry again. No, just that for special occasions and to feel that sense of achievement, it is something you should try at least once. Now, I hope that has convinced you.
Can you use Ready Rolled Puff Pastry instead?
Of course you can! I did consider using ready-made puff pastry, but the rest of this recipe is so simple that it would have felt like a cheat to do that. Not the Masterchef challenge I was after at all.
How similar is this recipe to the Masterchef Salmon en Croute?
To be honest, I don't know if my salmon en croute is similar to the Masterchef one at all. They were cooking canteen style for lots of people and served it with a fennel and orange salad (I think), but if I hadn't watched Masterchef, I certainly wouldn't have made this.
I adapted the recipe for the puff pastry from a Gordon Ramsey recipe. I was shocked at the equal quantities of butter and flour so I did cut the butter down a little and it still made a very rich buttery pastry. In fact, I think the amount could be reduced even further still if you wanted to. In fact, that is possibly the only problem with making certain things yourself. When they are unhealthy, you know just how unhealthy!
Salmon en Croute Recipe
Salmon en Croute
Ingredients for the Puff Pastry
- 120 g strong white flour
- 100 g butter
- ½ tsp salt
- 50 ml cold water
Ingredients for the Filling
- 2 salmon fillets
- 2 tablespoon cream cheese
- 1 tablespoon chives chopped
- Pinch black pepper
How to Make the Puff Pastry
- Sieve the flour and salt into a bowl. Cut the butter into small pieces and add to the bowl. Rub the butter into the flour but not as much as with normal pastry. Leave relatively large lumps of butter.
- Add the water a little at a time and mix with a knife so it binds together and forms a dough. You probably won't need all the water. cover the dough in cling film and put in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Flour the work surface, your hands and the rolling pin. Give the dough a quick knead and then roll it out. Roll in one direction only so you get a long thin piece of pastry in which you can see streaks of butter. Fold the top half down by one third and then fold the bottom half up.
- Turn the dough around by 90 degrees then roll out again and repeat the process twice more.Put the folded up dough back in the fridge for about half an hour.
- Roll out the dough. This time I did roll it in both directions as it would have been the wrong shape if I hadn't.
- If necessary remove the skin and any bones from the salmon. Season. Place the salmon on the pastry.
- Using a fork, mash the chives into the cream cheese. Season with black pepper. Then, spread the top of the salmon with the cheese mixture. Fold the pastry around the salmon and seal the edges of the parcel well. Use a fork to fold slightly and press the edges together. Cut away any excess pastry. Make slits on top of the pastry so excess steam can escape.
- Bake the parcels in the oven at about 200°c for 35 minutes.
- Serve the salmon with salad or vegetables.
More Delicious Salmon Recipes
Why not try one of these salmon recipes?
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