27 April 2015

Vegetable and Smoked Salmon Terrine

Yesterday our lovely neighbours came over for dinner and I thought I'd try my hand at a terrine. After finding a recipe that seemed simple enough, I started looking for a terrine mould. This turned out to be easier said than done and after looking for something suitable at a couple of local cookery shops and finding some disappointing reviews online, it occurred to me that I invested in food rings last year and I've not really used them much since. So I decided to use these instead. Of course with food rings, there is no bottom, so cooking the terrine in a bain marie was not an option, though I did try this out by placing the empty food rings in a flat deep baking tray and pouring water outside them - it just seeped through them, so much for flatness.

Now the recipe implied that the mixtures would be fairly runny, which meant that they would seep out as soon as I'd poured them into the rings too. Hmmmm...

So I thought, why not put some smoked salmon at the bottom and press it in to act as a sealant? And so I did.


115 g cauliflower florets
115 g carrots
115 g frozen peas
180 ml double cream
3 large eggs
salt, pepper,nutmeg,dill
butter for greasing
hot smoked salmon


  1. Peel, wash and slice the carrots. Wash the cauliflower and divide up to be roughly the same size as the carrots.
  2. Steam the vegetables until done, but make sure to keep them separate.
  3. When done, rinse under cold water to stop the boiling and prevent them from going too pale.
  4. In a deep bowl, place 60 ml of the cream and one egg, then add salt, pepper, nutmeg and the cauliflower. Blend until smooth, then set aside.
  5. Rinse the blender well, then repeat with another 60 ml of cream, egg, salt, pepper and the carrots. Blend until smooth and set aside.
  6. Rinse the blender again, then use the final 60 ml of cream, the last egg, salt, pepper and some dill along with the peas and blend until smooth.
  7. Taste the mixtures and adjust the seasoning if needed.
  8. Butter 4 food rings (7 cm diameter, not aluminium!) well on the inside and place on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Pre-heat the oven to 125 °C.
  9. Using two forks, "shred" some salmon and press into the bottom of each food ring, to make sure the edges are well covered and the salmon is about 1 cm thick.
  10. Carefully spoon the pea or cauliflower purée over the salmon.
  11. Now spoon the second purée and then the last one, then carefully place in the oven and bake for 1 h 15 minutes.
  12. Keep an eye on them, if they puff up too much, turn down the heat. Check for readiness with a toothpick.
  13. Remove from the oven and allow to cool, then move them to a plate, cover the whole thing with cling film and chill until ready to serve.
  14. The food rings should be taken off just before serving, to make sure the terrines keep their shape.

I followed the original recipe with the baking temperature and the terrines puffed up quite a lot, I had to turn down the oven heat twice and possibly they overcooked a bit. Once they cooled down, they split away from the side of the food rings. Unfortunately I forgot to butter the rings before using them.

When it was time to serve, I thought a whole terrine would be too much as a starter, so I ran a knife around each, carefully removed the metal ring, then cut out a slice from the middle of each, about 1.5 cm thick. Sadly the colours had gone quite pale too and I'm tempted to add some food colouring next time or alternatively add fresh basil or parsley to the pea purée to make it greener and some roasted red pepper to the carrot purée to make it more orange.

Curiously the pea purée turned out the thickest, which is why I used it next to the salmon, just to be on the safe side, in case I hadn't managed to cover the bottom edge and the whole thing would just drizzle out before it had set.

But on the whole the terrines tasted very nice. The salmon I had was covered with herbs, and was fairly salty, so I was careful with the seasoning and was a bit worried that it would just taste bland, but it was actually quite nice, both taste and texture. I did make the mistake of piping it into the food rings, so the two thinner purées did mix a little. But on the whole, I'm very pleased with the result and I think so were the guests.

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