In the latest and final installment of "The Appetizer Diaries", I present to you Salmon "Tartare" on new potato slices.
Originally, I wanted to make Thomas Keller's Salmon Tartare Cornets. I knew they would be a lot of work, but that the payoff would be totally worth it. Unfortunately, I couldn't find sashimi grade salmon anywhere, so I needed a new salmon recipe. So I scrambled and found this recipe way back in the Archives of Gourmet Magazine, June 1995.
1995! My first year of high school! The year of Windows 95 (Thanks Bill Gates), the announcement of the upcoming new DVD technology, the first computer generated film: Toy Story, a pre-crazy Mel Gibson in blue face paint as Braveheart, the end of the MLB Baseball strike, the song that would never get out of your head: "I'll Be There for You" by the Rembrandts (better known as the "Friends" theme song), and apparently, fake salmon tartare.
But let me tell you something. Apparently 1995 got something right, because this dish is amazing. This dish is a textural delight. Slightly firm potato slices are topped with a creamy mixture of diced smoked salmon mixed with creme fraiche with crunchy diced red onion and chives thrown in. These flew off the trays. Best of all... these are ready in 10 minutes. Holla!
The Thomas Keller dish would have been a lot of work for a great payoff and these were a small amount of work for a great payoff. So I think it worked out just fine.
Smoked Salmon Tartare on New Potatoes adapted from Gourmet Magazine
Yield: Makes 24 hors d'oeuvres
6 red potatoes, 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter (about 3/4 pound)
1/4 pound smoked salmon, chopped fine
2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup creme fraiche (use sour cream if you do not have creme fraiche)
Slice potatoes into twenty-four 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Boil potato slices, covered, until tender, about 10 minutes, and cool completely. Potato slices may be steamed 1 day ahead and kept in a sealed plastic bag, chilled. Bring potato slices to room temperature before proceeding with recipe.
In a bowl stir together "tartare" ingredients and salt and pepper to taste.
To assemble hors d'oeuvres:
Brush tops of potato slices with lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Top each slice with a heaping 1/2 teaspoon "tartare".