As always when we go to Sweden, we stock up on lovely hot smoked salmon and lately we've not had any at all, so this week I'm compensating for this fact. Besides, this time we got a new variety with chilli flakes on top, which turned out to be extremely tasty.
Last Monday we had it in the traditional way with steamed potatoes, mustard dill sauce and rocket salad. But Lundulph does like freshly made pasta, so I decided to combine the two and make ravioli. Without a pasta maker. Based on a recipe I found here.
The pasta is the one I made for the cheeseless lasagne. But before that, I prepared the filling.
1 medium red onion
150 g chestnut mushrooms
1 tbsp grapeseed oil
300 g hot smoked salmon
250 ml créme fraîche
salt and pepper to taste
- Peel the onion and clean the mushrooms, then dice both finely.
- Heat up the oil in a pan and fry the onion until it softens a bit, then add the mushrooms and fry on low heat until they've softened and given off some of their liquid.
- In the mean time, peel the skin off the salmon and discard. Place the salmon in a large bowl and break it up as finely as possible with a spoon.
- Add the onion and mushrooms to the salmon and stir in until they've combined well and evenly, then set aside to cool down.
- Once the mixture is cool, add the créme fraîche and stir in well, then season.
Mix the dough and leave to rest for 15 - 20 minutes, then divide into four parts and roll out one at a time to about 2 mm thickness. Remember to keep the other dough well covered up or it will dry out.
Cut out circles or rectangles, place a teaspoon of the filling in each, the brush the edge with water, fold into a little cushion and press along the edges. Then use a fork to seal the edge by pressing its teeth along the edge. Then set aside for an hour before cooking.
The above amount of filling was far too much for the amount of pasta dough, I used about half of it only and ended up with 33 fairly large ravioli. I could have probably managed to produce one more, but rolling, filling and sealing took about an hour and a half and I made the mistake of saving all the off-cuts for last, rather than use them with the next piece of dough. As a fair amount of flour is used during the rolling, all the off-cuts became stiffer and were a lot more difficult to roll out, not to mention that doing them last meant I was already tired from rolling. So my last couple of raviolis ended up a bit thicker than the rest.
However, the remaining salmon mixture will be fine in a quiche. I'll make that in a couple of days, with the remaining 100 ml of the cream from my mascarpone making escapade and some milk. In fact, I might try and use the mascarpone itself.
I also won't be cooking all the ravioli today, but will freeze most of them, ready to use as emergency food, when I can't think of anything better to do.
On the whole, such a simple dish sure required a lot of effort to make, I suspect it's easier with a machine.
I also think the filling mixture would be good on jacket potatoes, rather like my Mexican style topping.
As for cooking the ravioli, one of the instructions I found on the Internet said place in boiling water and leave there until they float back up to the surface. Well they did after about 20 seconds. This meant that the filling wouldn't even have heated through. So I gave them 5 minutes. And I was using my big pressure cooker, filled two-thirds with water, with a dash of salt and about a tablespoon and a half of olive oil, all of it simmering well before I put the ravioli in. Lundulph was extremely hungry after an hour in the gym, so that was the other reason I rushed things. The ravioli were still well al dente, so I put them back in for another 4 minutes. I think at least 10 minutes is the optimal. The flavour was fantastic and I got the texture right too, the ingredients were just the right size to be noticeable, yet blend in together nicely. We ate 11 of the ravioli, meaning there are two further batches of 11 in the freezer for rainy days. And none of the ravioli split while cooking.
Lundulph was wondering about sauce. I didn't make any, mainly because I couldn't think of what to make. Cheese is obviously completely out of the question here and tomato I think tends to be a bit too sour for fish. Lundulph did a quick search which cropped up some sort of bell pepper sauce. I'm not sure about it, but it might work. We agreed in the end to try some sort of a thin béchamel sauce with lots of dill and a dash of mustard. The idea is to echo the mustard dill sauce that is traditional with salmon, yet make it light and without the vinegariness. But a definite success.