1 hour 30 minutes, plus 32 hours curing, resting and pickling
Russell Bateman's salmon starter recipe ensures cucumber is the star of the dish, with thick cut cured salmon the perfect foil for the refreshing sorbet, sweet pickle and charred slices of cucumber. The salmon, sorbet and pickle will need to be prepared at least a day before so ensure you start in plenty of time. If you don't have a chamber vacuum to compress the charred cucumber you could just infuse the slices in vinegar for a few hours instead.
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To cure the salmon, place the sugar, salts, spices, dill and citrus zests and juice in a blender and blitz until fully incorporated
500g of sugar
250g of salt
250g of rock salt
1 tbsp of fennel seeds
1 tbsp of coriander seeds
1 tbsp of white peppercorns
1 bunch of dill
3 lemons, zest and juice
2 oranges, zest and juice
Pour half the curing mixture into a non-porous tray and place the salmon on top. Cover with the remainder of the cure and gently massage into the fish, then cover the tray with cling film and place in the fridge for 8 hours
1 side of fresh salmon, skinned
After this time, remove the salmon from the tray and stir the curing mixture thoroughly to loosen. Place the salmon upside down into the tray and spoon the curing mixture over the fish. Cover the tray with cling film and leave to cure for another 8 hours
Turn and baste the fish again and place in the fridge for a further 8 hours. Repeat this process once more, turning and basting the fish in between resting until the fish has been curing for 32 hours
While the fish is curing, prepare the cucumbers for the sorbet. Place the cucumbers in a blender and blitzing to form a rough purée. Pour into a fine sieve placed over a large bowl and press down with a spoon to help get all the liquid out, then leave to strain over the bowl for 30 minutes
3 cucumbers, peeled and roughly chopped
Meanwhile, prepare the pickled cucumber. Place the water, vinegar, sugar and salt in a pan and place over a high heat. Bring up to the boil, then remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly
300g of water
200g of white wine vinegar
100g of sugar
3g of salt
Halve and deseed the cucumber and use a melon baller to scoop small rounds from the flesh. Place the cucumber balls in the warm pickling liquor and leave to marinate for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight
After the cucumber purée has drained discard the pulp left in the sieve and weigh out 500g of the juice. Pour into a clean blender along with the yoghurt, lemon juice and ProCrema and set aside
500g of Greek yoghurt
50g of lemon juice
75g of ProCrema
Combine the liquid glucose, water and salt in a small pan over a high heat and bring to the boil. Remove the pan from the heat and pour into the blender with the cucumber mixture, blitzing for 1 minute until smooth and thoroughly combined. Transfer to a bowl and leave to rest overnight in the fridge
50g of liquid glucose
150g of water
6g of salt
After the salmon has finished curing, wash the fish under cold water to rinse off the cure. Carefully pat dry, then cut into 0.5cm thick slices and reserve in the fridge until ready to serve
For the charred cucumber, place 1 of the cucumbers in a blender and blitz to form a rough purée. Pour into a fine sieve placed over a bowl and leave to strain for 10 minutes. Discard the pulp, mix the vinegar into the juice and set aside
50g of white wine vinegar
Take the second cucumber and use a blowtorch to completely scorch and blacken the skin – there should be no green skin visible at all. Wrap in cling film while still warm, trapping the residual heat from the skin and allowing it to penetrate the cucumber as it cools
Once completely cool, unwrap the charred cucumber and cut into slices. Arrange the slices in a single layer across a deep tray and pour over the reserved cucumber juice and vinegar mixture. Place the tray in a chamber sealer and compress on full vacuum, then remove the slices from the liquid, season with salt and reserve in the fridge until ready to serve
Once the sorbet mixture has chilled overnight, remove from the fridge and pour into an ice cream maker. Churn according to the manufacturer's instructions until the mixture forms a smooth sorbet
When ready to serve, drain the pickled cucumber balls from the liquor and divide between serving plates. Top with the slices of cured salmon, slices of charred cucumber and a quenelle of cucumber sorbet. Drizzle over a little rapeseed oil and garnish with dill fronds, edible flowers and grated lemon zest
1 lemon, zest only
fronds of fresh dill, or micro herbs
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