…. cold larder, salmon and a winner; salmon and prawn cake

It must have been about nearly 25 years ago now – I saw this recipe in a Swedish fashion magazine and I fell in love. In those days I worked as a sous chef in the cold larder section. Was in charge of cold starters, buffets and dessert – yes everything cold – but never had an input on the menu. Always written by the Senior Head Chef.

Seeing this starter – I know I had to do a coup against him – to manage to get it on the menu. Went into the office with the magazine and tried to talk him into trying it, but not very successful. The picture in the magazine was stunning where the cake was displayed on black plate.

So I decided to buy all the ingredients and the baking tin that I need the following morning when we had arrived in Kiel, Germany – off I went to Karstadt and bought everything that we didn’t have aboard.

Back in to the galley and did the cake – and in the evening I served to my boss and he understood that I had created a winner, because we ,Swedes, loves our salmon and our “löjrom” – löjrom specially. Even if expensive it always sold.

The cake became so popular – that it only took a couple of weeks and he ordered me black plates. All the garnish I used was a lemon wedge and crisp dill spring. What I understand do they still put this cake on the menu here in Sweden. Many restaurants had and have this cake on their menus – we where the first ever and I take the credit for that.

Couldn’t serve it UK, because we couldn’t get the sweet dark bread or the “löjrom”. That was my first step to be knowledge and after that I always had the input on the starters and desserts when it was time to change the menus. Still a big step to get involved in the hot side. Please, read my post regarding “löjrom” – 29/1 “from the pure, brackish waters we find the red gold”

A tip about have to get crisp dill – cut the stalks of a bit – and put it a glass with very small (0.5″) amount of really hot water – and in a hour time you will have dill like Christmas tree – then you put it in the fridge … no more water unnecessary.

Have to apologize for using gelatin leafs and not powder – have never worked with powder. The leafs you soak in cold water until it goes all soft and then squeeze it hard  – so all excess water come out – melt it in small pan on very low heat until it goes runny liquid – take of the stove and add a 15ml (1 tbsp) of cold liquid to it. I normal take white wine for this dish – so it don’t get stiff again. This has to be done just as it added to the mixture.

So to this stunning cake.

Salmon cake with “löjrom”, 6-10 portions
200g dark sweet rye bread.
80 g butter,
5 leaves of gelatine (1 sheet gelatine = 5ml (1tsp) powdered gelatine
100gr peeled prawns
60ml (4tbsp) chopped dill
500 g medium cured cheese, (Quark /Kesella)
200ml sour cream
1 pinch white pepper
150 grams löjrom or any similar caviar/roe

1. Melt butter in saucepan. Run rye bread to crumbs in food processor fitted with the knife. Add the melted butter and mix. Press bread mixture into the button of a springform tin with removable rim.
2. Put the gelatine leaves in cold water. Chop the salmon into small pieces and chop the dill finely – by hand, because it so easy to get to mushy in a processor.
3. Roughly cut the prawns – make sure there is no excess liquid before chopping in them – if not using fresh.
4. Put cured cheese, sour cream, lemon juice and white pepper into a mixing bowl and add prawns, dill and salmon. No extra salt needed. Mix well.
5. Melt the gelatine leaves in a saucepan with a tablespoon of water. Mix gelatin liquid (not too hot) in with lax and prawn mixuter and spread mixture on top of the bread in the tin. Cover and chill for at least 6 hours.
6. Over night drain the lörjom or caviar – in a coffee filter, covered – in the fridge so it’s really dry.

Before serving – just spread the caviar/löjrom over the cake and remove the rim of the tin – and you have a winner.

Photo provided by; hb.fi / tradekool.com / domstein.se / stenaline.se / evagun. se / foodpassion.se / 21food.com / kitchen-online-store.com / sandbergsreceptblogg.blogspot com