12 smoked salmongood quality
1 package mini plain pappadums
1 bunch watercress
100 grams mascarpone cheese
2 tablespoons capers
1 small purple onion
extra virgin olive oil
sea salt flakes
freshly ground black pepper
One would think that a dish built around salmon should remind me of my life living on the west coast of Canada, home of arguably some of the best salmon in the world and definitely one of the most abundant sources, but strangely enough this dish reminds me of Sydney more than anything.
When I first moved to Sydney in the mid 90’s I was blown away to see how many local menus featured salmon. Canadians weren’t the only ones with a taste for this beautiful fish and obviously Canada and Scandinavia weren’t the only source for it! Some excellent Atlantic salmon was and is being farmed in Tasmania.
There are subtle differences between all varieties of salmon and each breed has its own unique characteristics. Whether it is a coho, pink or sockeye from the coast of British Columbia or Atlantic from the farms of Tasmania, this dish will be a welcome addition to any hot summer patio filled with friends and chilled Verdelho.
- Place 4 first course plates in the refrigerator.
- Pick the woody bits off the watercress and ensure you have 16 nice sprigs of water cress.
- Remove any brown bloodline off the slices of salmon.
- Place the mascarpone into a mixing bowl and zest 1 lime into it.
- Chop the capers and add to the mascarpone.
- Finely chop the onion and add about 1-2 tbsp to the mascarpone.
- Juice half of one of the limes into the mascarpone and the other half into another small mixing bowl.
- Whisk the mascarpone, add a couple tablespoons of olive oil and continue to mix until fully incorporated, season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Lightly brush either side of 15 pappadums with olive oil and laying one layer on a dinner plate microwave on high for approx 30-50 seconds (until crispy) turning once during cooking.
- Remove them from the microwave and allow to cool, continue process until all 15 are done.
- Add a touch of olive oil to the lime juice you set aside and whisk together, and toss the watercress through it (the watercress should not be dripping with the dressing, just a shadow of flavour).
- Squeeze the other lime into another bowl and again whisk in some olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Arrange the 4 chilled plates and dollop approx 1 tsp of the mascarpone mix in the centre, and gently push one pappadum into it.
- Scrunching the edges of one slice of salmon into the centre, place it on the pappadum, (remember weíre making a stack and want some height, not a flat sandwich).
- Place a couple of sprigs of the watercress on the salmon
- Dollop another tsp of mascarpone on that.
- Gently press another pappadum onto that.
- Another slice of salmon.
- 1 sprig of watercress on that.
- Another touch of mascarpone.
- Another pappadum.
- Another slice of salmon.
- A small amount of mascarpone.
- A final piece of watercress garnish on that.
- Garnish around the stack with a bit of the remaining lime and oil dressing and a quick round with the pepper mill.
- If you have a few pappadums left, well done, they are very fragile and that is why I had you prepare a few extra.