I’ve had the idea in my head for a while now to make and saffron puff pastry and use it for seafood pies – so I did. This is the first time I have made puff pastry from scratch. If you haven’t made it before I reckon don’t bother – it’s a pain in the arse – just buy it. However I suppose you have to make it if you want to put saffron in it.
Anyway….with the commercial scallop season maybe drawing to a close soon I thought I would make some scallop pasties.
For the Saffron Puff Pastry
Just use a standard puff recipe like this but into the iced water bleed around 10 saffron threads.
For the Filling
250g Fresh Scallops
16x Spears of Asparagus
Juice and Zest of 1 Lemon
Pepper and Salt
1 Cup of Grated Mozzarella
1. Roll the pastry flat to about 5mm thick and using a large soup bowl cut out circles of pastry.
2. On one side of the circle of pastry, leaving 1 cm around the edge for when you fold, place a little cheese, then 4 spears of asparagus cut to the length the of the pastry, 5 or 6 scallops, pepper and salt, a few thyme leaves, a sprinkling of lemon zest and a squeeze of lemon juice and a little more cheese.
3. Then wash with egg around the edge of the pastry, fold over, then press down with a fork to seal. Prick the top of the pasty to let steam out.
4. Refrigerate for half and hour then put in an oven at 200 C for about 25mins or until golden.
5. Serve with tomato relish – you might want to add a bit of extra vinegar to your relish as the pasty is pretty full on.
It was Lottie’s birthday last week and she requested fish for tea so I made a very Tassie stay at home pub style meal – Surf on Surf – I think it was more for me than her in the end. Being winter/spring Tasmanian scallops and Trevalla are still available (I got mine from Mures) so I decided to to those with a ham hock sauce and some mushy peas.
Ham Hock Sauce
1x Ham Hock
10x Spring Onions Roughly Chopped
3x Cloves of Garlic Chopped
2x Carrots – Chopped
2x Sticks of Celery – Chopped
2x Tbs Black Pepper Corns
10x Parsley Stalks
3x Bay Leaves
2x Sprigs of Thyme
6x Cups of Water
1x Cup White Wine
Zest of 1 Lemon
1/2 Cup Cream
Juice of 1 lemon
1. Soften everything (apart from the cream, lemon juice, wine and water) in a large pot in some oil for 15mins.
2. Then turn up the heat and add the white wine and water and bring to the boil. Then reduce to a simmer for 4-6hrs covered. Breaking up the ham hock as you go. Ad salt to taste.
3. Strain and reserve the liquid.
4. Take one cup of the liquid and reduce by half then add the cream and lemon juice simmer for 5min and set aside. You will have some stock left over – it makes a good soup base.
2x 180g Portions of Trevalla – Skin off
Salt & Pepper
2x Cups of Peas
2x Tbs Chopped Tarragon
2x Tbs White Vinegar
1/2 Brown Onion Finely Chopped
1/3 Cup Cream
Knob of butter
1. In a pot, soften the the onion until transparent. Then add the peas and tarragon and cook over a med. heat until done then add the cream and mash half really well and half so just smashed. Then add the vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.
2. Fry off the scallops in a pan very quickly in a little oil and pepper and salt and set aside. It should only take 1-2mins.
3. Then in the same pan cooked the Trevalla – that should only take approx 2mins each side.
Serve the fish on a bed of peas with scallops on top and a bit of the ham hock and lemon sauce. We also had ours with smashed new potatoes.
Last week one of my mates let me know that some more Atlantic salmon had escaped down the Huon. This was far too tempting so I rescheduled a couple of meeting and we headed down for sunrise. It was a pretty productive morning, we ended up with two salmon and one trout.
This recipe comes from playing around with some of the left over salmon from my last post. Sorry about the slightly shitty photo but I made this one down at our shack on Bruny Island and we were running late to catch the ferry home!
2x Fillets of Atlantic Salmon – Skin On and Pinned Boned
1 Cup on Honey at room temp
3/4 Cup of Sea Salt Flake
2 Tbs Cracked Black Pepper
1 Cup of Chopped Basil
1. In a large tray sprinkle a little of the sea salt over the bottom then lay the fillets skin side down then evenly sprinkle the pepper, salt and honey and over them – in that order. Then evenly place the basil over the 2 fillets.
2. Then take one fillet and turn it 180 degrees so it is facing the opposite way and place it on the other fillet skin side up.
3. Wrap up in plastic wrap and place a chopping board on top of the salmon in the tray and weights on top of the chopping board. Cans of soup, beers etc work well.
4. Place in the fridge and leave for 24hrs and then turn. Put back in the fridge for another 24hrs. It should take about 2 days but keep an eye on it – it depends on the size of the fillets. You know it is done when the tail bits start to go a little rubbery.
5. Then wash off all the salt and honey under fresh water, pat dry and a little more pepper and pop it back in the fridge on a plate uncovered for about a day to dry it out a little – you could do it in a cool spot in the open I suppose.
My favorite thing in the world is gravlax and scrambled eggs so I highly recommend that. This time I some crumbled blue cheese in with the eggs – the sharpness of the cheese worked well with the honey. Or with a dill and lemon mayo and pickles on some crisp bread.
Earlier this week Dad and I had planned to head out flathead fishing, but we had heard of some Atlantic salmon escaping from one of the fish farms down the Channel so we quickly changed our plans.
You don’t really have to get up early for Atlantics, so we kept gentlemans hours for this trip – it was still bloody cold! We put the nets in first then had a fish with the rods for an hour or two, but it was a bit of a slow day on the rod and reel. Luckily we had the square hooks in so that saved the day. The Atlantics were decent fish – around 7-8lbs, so after a couple we decided that was enough and pulled the pin.
It was a pretty nice Winters day on the water really.
I struggled to figure out what to do with the salmon. But in the end I decided to do a recipe inspired by our recent trip to Sweden.
Honey Hot Smoked Salmon
1x Fillet of Atlantic Salmon Cut into Approx 180g Portions (or however many portions you need – it is easy to cut into portions before you smoke)
2/3 Cup of Honey
1/3 Cup of Salt Flakes
2x Tbs Cracked Black Pepper
1. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and leave to stand for an hour.
2. Light your smoke box (if you don’t have one I suggest buying one – they are awesome – you can get them from most fishing or BBQ shops).
3. When hot place the Salmon in the smoker and smoke until just cooked. Then let sit – it will be better at room temp or a bit above.
Soft Boiled Quail Eggs
15x Quail Eggs
Pepper and Salt
1. Boil a large pot of water. Then add the eggs and biol for exactly 2 minutes then plunge into cold water.
2. Peel the eggs then dress with pepper and salt and walnut oil.
Fast Pickled Cucumbers
1x Cucumber Sliced Finely
1/4 of a Salad Onion diced super finely
1 Tsp of Finely sliced Mint
1/2 Cup White Vinegar
1 1/2 Cups Water
Good pinch of Salt
1. Combine all the ingredients in a pickling jar so the cucumber is covered in liquid. Refrigerate for an hour and serve.
2-3 Egg Yolks (depending on size)
1/2 Cup Melted Butter
1/2 Tsp Finely Chopped Garlic
1 1/2 Tbs White Vinegar
1/4 Cup Finely Chopped Basil
Salt and White Pepper to Taste
1. Boil a pot of water on the stove, then in a bowl add the egg yolks, garlic and vinegar then place on top of the pot of water to form a double boiler and whisk solidly for 2 minutes so the eggs don’t scramble. They are done when they are foamy.
2. Still on top of the double boiler while whisking, slowly add the butter – like you would a mayonnaise. Keep whisking until the mixture thickens. Then take of the heat and keep whisking for another 30 sec or so to ensure no lumps.
3. Add the basil and let stand for 15 mins. The serve on top for the salmon.
Even though we ate this as a meal. I reckon it would be really nice served on a large platter as a shared starter with some rye bread.
Recently I got the chance to go out on the Mures fishing boat the Kiella to film some footage for a TV commercial they have coming up.
We left from Hobart at about 2pm and headed for the Continental Shelf. It was the first time I had been a bit sea sick without being hungover – I don’t think watching Who Wants to be a Millionaire in a little rolling cabin helped. We set the lines during the night and picked them up first thing in the morning. The fishing was a tad slow but winter isn’t really the time of year for trevalla and it was too rough to get to the good spots.
After we had hauled the lines one of my mates picked me up in his boat because the Kiella was staying out for a few days. Before I left for this trip I strategically dropped my tuna gear off to his house so we could have a fish on the way home. 20mins after we had but the lines in we had 3 bluefin on board so headed in to some calmer water to clean them. Tom told me that was his first ever bluefin, so I said “You know you have to eat the heart of your first bluefin?”. After a bit of convincing and telling him that I ate the heart of my first bluefin he ate it. SUCKER! I felt bad so tried a bit too – wasn’t great.
Anyway I didn’t really take many photos this trip so here is a few clips of coming back through Tasman Island and Cape Pillar to show how rough it was. The boys were surfing Shipstern Bluff the same day.
So after this trip I thought it was appropriate to do a trevalla/blue-eye recipe. This is my take on a fairly traditional Swedish fish stew. In the photo you will see I made it with tarragon dumplings (which were nice) but I think it was nicer just with some fresh bread and butter.
1/2 a Leek Chopped
1x Clove of chopped garlic
1/2 Cup Sliced Fennel
6x Baby Carrots
1x Stick Celery Chopped
1x Knob of Butter
1x Tbs Fresh Thyme
1x Cup Fish Stock
1x Cup Cream
1x Cup White Wine
2x Bay Leaves
Zest and Juices of 1/2 Lemon
20x Strands of Saffron
400g Trevalla Cubed (1″)
White Pepper and Salt to Season
1. Soften leek, carrots, fennel, celery, and thyme in butter in a heavy pan. Then add the garlic and bay leaves and up the heat and add the white wine, saffron and fish stock and simmer til the carrots are tender. Season to taste.
2. Add the cream and bring back to the simmer then add the trevalla and turn off the heat.
3. Serve with crusty bread.