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How To Make Mustard Garlic Herb Paste

How To Make Mustard Garlic Herb Paste

Mustard Garlic Herb Paste – For Summer Grilling

Originally Published on MAY 25, 2021 BY MARIE 2 COMMENTS

Summer grilling is here and life is opening up again, it’s time for gathering together with friends and family, having backyard BBQ’s and enjoying special occasions which we all missed so much!

Memorial Day is just around the corner and so is Father’s Day and if you’re planning on doing any…

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How To Make Mustard Garlic Herb Paste

Mustard Garlic Herb Paste – For Summer Grilling

Originally Published on MAY 25, 2021 BY MARIE 2 COMMENTS


Summer grilling is here and life is opening up again, it’s time for gathering together with friends and family, having backyard BBQ’s and enjoying special occasions which we all missed so much!

Memorial Day is just around the corner and so is Father’s Day and if you’re planning on doing any cookouts, I hope you add this intensely flavored mustard, garlic herb paste to just about whatever you’re planning on grilling.

herb paste

Fresh herbs are the key to this delicious herb paste which can be made in a jiffy using a food processor and don’t be afraid to double or triple this recipe, I promise it will amp up your grilling game!

herb box

I used a mix of basil, parsley, thyme, and rosemary. Each herb carries its own intense flavor which pairs nicely with grilled foods but feel free to create your own combo that you might prefer.

cut herbs
marinated chicken

Smother the herb paste all over whatever your grilling and then let it sit for a while to intensify.

marinated kabobs

Brush it all over veggies, chicken, beef, pork, and even fish, the more the better!

grilled chicken

I’ve been using this herb paste since way back, here’s a post I did nine years ago, time sure does fly!

grilled herb paste kabobs

Snip off some herbs and make this mustard, garlic, herb paste the next time you turn on the grill, enjoy!

Mustard Garlic Herb Paste – SFor Summer Grilling

Print Consider double or tripling this recipe, it’s that good! Author: Marie

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of herbs like parsley, basil, thyme, and rosemary, but feel free to use your favorite combination
  • 3 large garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. In a food processor add the herbs and garlic and process, then add zest and lemon juice and finish with the olive oil to the consistency of a loose paste, easy to spread.
  2. Make sure to let it sit on your protein or veggie of choice for at least an hour before grilling.
  3. ENJOY
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RELATED:

Eat Your Invasives With This Garlic Mustard Pesto Recipe! — Friends of Rye Nature Center

Roasted Garlic Grainy Mustard – Recipe – FineCooking


12 Ways To Add Extra Flavor To Your Coffee

12 Ways To Add Extra Flavor To Your Coffee

How To Add Extra Flavor To Your Coffee

 Mark Morphew Originally Published March 23, 2021, 8 min read bean Ground is completely reader-supported. When you buy via the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more

As great as plain black coffee is sometimes our taste buds need a break from the norm, admit it having the same thing day in day out tends…

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12 Ways To Add Extra Flavor To Your Coffee

How To Add Extra Flavor To Your Coffee

 Mark Morphew Originally Published March 23, 2021, 8 min read bean Ground is completely reader-supported. When you buy via the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more


As great as plain black coffee is sometimes our taste buds need a break from the norm, admit it having the same thing day in day out tends to get boring. An excellent way to spice up your favorite coffee beverage is by adding some extra flavor. Forget about those store brought sweeteners and creamers that are often packed full of garbage, what I’m talking about are natural flavorings.

Some of these flavored coffee combinations are strange, and others not so obvious, but trust me they will bring life back into your boring cup of Joe and you’ll wonder why you didn’t think of them before.

Below I have experimented with various ways to add extra flavor to your coffee, and I think these 12 are the best so far that will tickle ya taste buds and leave you coming back for more!

I have no doubt that after going through this list, you will be heading home in a flash to give at least one or two of these coffee combinations a try.

1. Cinnamon

cup of black coffee and whole Cinnamon

Adding cinnamon to coffee isn’t anything new, but it’s one that’s stood the test of time and is a favorite with many coffee drinkers. But before you read on I have a twist on the already popular combination.

Instead of sprinkling cinnamon on top of your coffee or even stirring it into your brew, you’ll want to infuse the cinnamon with your coffee beans if you want to give your coffee a real cinnamon kick.

It’s not as hard as it sounds, simply grind whole sticks of cinnamon along with your whole coffee beans. If you don’t grind your beans fresh before each brew (why not?) you can instead sprinkle some cinnamon into your pre-ground coffee before you add water.

Adding the cinnamon to the start of the coffee brewing process will allow for a fully blended coffee that actually tastes like cinnamon and not just smell like it.💡 Fun Fact: Did you know that you can easily add flavor to your coffee by using a French Press. Simply immerse your Cinnamon, Vanilla, Ginger, or anything else inside of your French Press along with your freshly brewed coffee. Allow it to sit for a while for the magic to happen, the infused flavors will transform your coffee into something else! Looking for a French Press? These are the best French Press coffee makers we could find.

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2. Cocoa Nibs

ceramic dish containing Cocoa Nibs

Cocoa Nibs.. say what? Isn’t that just chocolate? Not really. Cocoa Nibs are what chocolate is before it’s processed into the shaped bars we all know and love. These chunks are more black in color than brown and are 100% cocoa beans. The texture is also different, and the taste is far nuttier and slightly chewier plus they deliver a dark rich taste.

It’s this flavor profile that makes Cocoa Nibs the perfect addition to your coffee. Trust me they taste great! Add about ½ a teaspoon of Cocoa Nibs to every two cups of coffee that goes into your coffee grinder, grind together, and brew your coffee as normal.

If you love dark chocolate and black coffee this flavored coffee is going to bring you to your knees! YUM!

3. Vanilla

Fresh Vanilla Pods

If you love adding flavored creamers and sugar to your coffee but aren’t happy about the added calories you’re loading into your cup, try some vanilla.

The best way to take advantage of this natural coffee flavoring is to add a vanilla bean to your whole coffee beans just before you grind. If you can’t get your hands on fresh vanilla, you can use a few drops of extract directly into your cup of coffee or into your portafilter on your espresso machine before you pull a shot. Remember, though, a little goes a long way, any more than two drops and you’ll be pouring your brew down the drain.

4. Ginger

Fresh Whole Ginger

I’m not a fan of this coffee flavor, but for those of you that enjoy ginger tea, this coffee combination might be a winner!

Ginger can be overpowering if used in large quantities, so I recommend that you only add a few small slices to your grounds before you brew. The hot water will pass over the ginger and will infuse with your coffee. If you don’t have fresh ginger, you can supplement by using one or two tablespoons of ginger powder instead, but fresh is definitely better!

5. Cardamom

Fresh Cardamom

Cardamom is relatively unheard of in the west but is hugely popular in the Middle East. The taste of cardamom is very similar to ginger and comes packed with numerous health benefits. Fiber and other essential minerals are just some of the hidden gems of cardamom as well as aiding in circulation it goes great with coffee.

Either add whole cardamom seeds to your whole coffee beans before you grind or sprinkle a couple of pinches of pre-ground cardamom seeds to your freshly brewed cup of coffee.

6. Star Anise

Whole fresh Star Anise

This coffee flavor isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but it will definitely get you a few strange looks. Star Anise is known for a strong licorice taste with sweet, floral notes. For those of you that enjoy licorice, it makes a great coffee infusion when paired with dark roasted coffee.

Add your Star Anise into your whole coffee beans before grinding and brew as you normally would. However, if overused it can be very overpowering, I recommend using no more than 3/4 of a clove, or you’ll be pouring your freshly brewed coffee into the sink.

7. Nutmeg

Fresh whole Nutmeg and a grater

If you want to bring out the earthiness in your morning coffee brew, I recommend trying a bit of Nutmeg. The added sweetness and earthy taste are truly unique and are a sure way to tickle ya taste buds.

The amount of Nutmeg to add to your cup of coffee is down to personal taste; however, I find that one shard is perfect for a typical cup. With that said experiment until you find the best infusion for your liking.

8. Lavender

Lavender next to a white coffee cup

I only thought that lavender was something found in body soaps, that was before I tried lavender ice cream as a child, yum!

Lavender is the perfect companion for many things, and coffee is no exception; I have found that it marriages best with the fruitier roasted coffees. You can either add a few sprinkles of lavender in with your ground coffee and infuse when you pour your hot water or add a few tiny drops of lavender oil to your brewed coffee. is brewed. Either way, this combination tastes great, especially on a lazy spring afternoon.

9. Clove

Dried Clove

If you smoke cigarettes or have done in the past, this Clover-flavored coffee is going to be a winner! Many popular cigarette brands add clove into their tobacco mix to give an added sweetness.

When it comes to cloves and coffee use sparingly, because this spice can be very overpowering. Either grind with your whole coffee beans before you brew or add a couple of cloves to your pre-ground coffee and infuse when boiling water is poured over your grounds. If the taste is too strong, experiment until you find the best ratio for your taste buds.

10. Peppermint Oil

Bottle of Peppermint Oil on a table

Nothing screams ‘tis the season more than a steamy cup of peppermint coffee. To successfully infuse your brewed coffee with this delicious holiday flavor it’s best to use pure peppermint oil which works really well with chocolatey dark roasted coffee beans.

To try this flavored coffee add a couple of drops to your coffee during the brewing process, however, use sparingly because peppermint oil in its concentrated form can quickly become overpowering no matter how rich your coffee beans are.

11. A Raw Egg

tray of fresh eggs

It might seem crazy, but adding a raw egg to your coffee tastes great! Hot coffee mixed with a raw egg delivers a one-of-a-kind flavor – trust me, you have to try it, at least once, It might not be a taste that everyone enjoys for everyone, but to be honest it’s not as disgusting as you might expect.

The addition of a raw egg gives the coffee a dense and slightly creamy body without masking the natural coffee flavors and aromas.

12. Butter

adding butter to coffee

If you haven’t heard about Bulletproof Coffee (1), you must have been living in a cave. Many coffee lovers and health buffs have come accustomed to this coffee butter combination which has gained popularity in recent years.

This strange combination can be traced back to south-east Asia where strange coffee infusions are commonplace. Even though it’s hard to imagine butter which is normally only used in cooking, going so well with coffee, if done right it really is a marriage made in heaven (I said if done right!).

Just adding a teaspoon of organic butter to a sweet roast coffee will give your coffee a smooth, rich texture with a buttery depth that is truly unique.

References (1) Bulletproof Blog. https://blog.bulletproof.com/how-to-make-your-coffee-bulletproof-and-your-morning-too/

Mark Morphew

Mark is the Editor-in-Chief at the popular coffee blog – Bean Ground. He’s been active in the catering and hospitality industry for over 20 years. When he’s not fiddling around with a new coffee gadget, you’ll find him busy working on his other passion, web development. You can discover more about Mark here.

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How To Make Romeo Salta’s Easter Salad

How To Make Romeo Salta’s Easter Salad

Romeo Salta’s Easter Salad

Frank Originally Published On 27 March 2021antipasti38 Comments

Romeo Salta was a renowned restauranteur back in the 1950s through the 1980s. His swank namesake Manhattan restaurant attracted luminaries from the worlds of business, politics, and entertainment.

My father, who was quite the buongustaio back in the day, used to take our family there from time to time…

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How To Make Romeo Salta’s Easter Salad

Romeo Salta’s Easter Salad

Frank Originally Published On 27 March 2021antipasti38 Comments

Romeo Salta's Easter Salad

Romeo Salta was a renowned restauranteur back in the 1950s through the 1980s. His swank namesake Manhattan restaurant attracted luminaries from the worlds of business, politics, and entertainment.

My father, who was quite the buongustaio back in the day, used to take our family there from time to time when I was a kid. It was a thrill to rub shoulders with the rich and famous. But Romeo Salta was also my first introduction to Italian food other than Angelina’s Neapolitan cookery. Salta served what was at the time called “Northern Italian” food. That was the rather ludicrous catch-all phrase used at the time for any regional Italian cuisine besides the ones from Naples and points south brought to America by the mass immigration of the early 20th century. These cuisines from central and northern Italy were new and different and became very fashionable. So-called northern Italian food was considered “lighter”, and certainly more “sophisticated”, than the southern Italian cookery Americans were familiar with, although that wasn’t really the case.

In 1962, Romeo Salta wrote a cookbook for anyone who wanted to try recreating the dishes he served up at his restaurant. The book, called The Pleasures of Italian Cooking, didn’t have much of an impact on the way Americans actually cooked. For that, we would have to wait another 11 years, for Marcella Hazan’s landmark Classic Italian Cookbook, published in 1973. Still, Salta’s cookbook is a piece of culinary history, the first cookbook published in America to present “real” Italian cookery. (The first such book in the English language had probably been Elizabeth David’s Italian Food, published in the UK about eight years before Salta’s book.)

I recently inherited my mother’s copy of The Pleasures of Italian Cooking. What surprised me the most, given Romeo Salta’s glamorous reputation, was just how homey most of the recipes are. Antipasti like mozzarella in carrozza and fagioli e tonno. First courses like zuppa di scarola e fagiolignocchispaghetti aglio e oliocarbonarapolenta pasticciata, and risotto alla milanese. Second courses like saltimboccabollito mistopollo e peperonifrittata… In other words, everyday home cooking—and from all corners of Italy, not just the center and north.

I did find one recipe that appears to be Romeo’s own creation. Dubbed Insalata di Pasqua or Easter Salad, it’s lightly blanched green peas, garnished with ham, anchovies, and olives, and dressed with a citronette enriched with hard-boiled egg yolk. It sounded intriguing and certainly seasonal, so I gave it a go, playing with the recipe a bit to suit my own tastes.

I was well pleased with the results. Other than a Russian Salad, I’d never tried using green peas in a salad, and never with a simple oil-based dressing. It worked beautifully. The fresh taste of the peas was complemented by the savory ham and other garnishes. The salad was filling yet light. And it was rather pretty to look at, too. All in all, a fitting antipasto to begin Easter dinner.

So if you feel like a little bit of nostalgia this Easter, why not give Romeo Salta’s Easter Salad a try?

Ingredients

Serves 4-6

  • 1 lb (500 grams) frozen peas, blanched, drained, and cooled
  • 1/4 lb (150 grams) cooked ham, cut into cubes
  • One head of Boston lettuce

For the garnish:

  • A few anchovy fillets
  • Olives, green and black
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, cut into wedges (optional)

For the dressing:

  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) olive oil
  • The juice of one lemon
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

Blanch the peas in boiling water. Just let the water come back to the boil and let it simmer for perhaps a minute, then drain in a large colander. Rinse the peas in cold water to stop the cooking, then let them drain until they are perfectly dry.

Line a salad bowl with the Boston lettuce leaves, using as many as you need to line your bowl.

In a separate mixing bowl, mix the drained peas and cubed ham together, then pile the mixture on top of the salad leaves.

Arrange the anchovy fillets, olives and, if using, wedges of hard-boiled egg on top of the peas and ham.

Whisk together the dressing ingredients until they are perfectly emulsified. Taste and adjust for seasoning, then pour over the salad.

Serve immediately.

Romeo Salta's Easter Salad

Notes on Romeo Salta’s Easter Salad

Truth be told, as fascinating as it is as a piece of culinary history, The Pleasures of Italian Cooking is not always a pleasure to cook from. Salta’s instructions are fairly telegraphic, typical of many Italian cookbooks. But more to the point, a good number of his recipes, such as the one for peperoni alla piemontese, simply do not work. (Yes, I tried.) In others, the measurements seem off, such as his recipe for sedani alla parmigiana, which calls for braising three bunches of celery in a half-cup of stock. I wonder if he tested—or even proofread—his recipes?

Salta’s Original Recipe

This Easter Salad recipe also needed some interpretation. Here are his verbatim instructions:

Put peas on the bottom of a salad bowl. Arrange the anchovies and ham over them, then lettuce wedges around the edge of the bowl. Beat together the oil, [hard boiled] egg yolks, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Pour over ingredients in the bowl. Garnish with olives.

Good luck with that! If you followed these cryptic instructions to the letter you would wind up with something rather odd. So as you can see, I played around. For one thing, I used the lettuce as a bed rather than an edging. Salta doesn’t specify the type of lettuce, but given the period and his instruction to cut it into wedges, I’m guessing iceberg. I used whole leaves of Boston lettuce instead.

And then I mixed the ham, cut into cubes with the peas rather than laying slices of it on top. Rather than using a whole can of anchovies as Salta calls for, I used enough to make a cross on top, symbolic of Easter. And rather than adding hard-boiled egg yolks to the dressing, which struck me as probably unsightly, I used whole hard-boiled eggs—also an Easter tradition—cut into wedges, as part of the garnish.

On Romeo Salta and his restaurant

Romeo Salta himself was born a southerner, in Puglia in 1904. After his father died when he was six, Salta was raised in a state-run orphanage in Florence. He had no formal culinary training, learning his trade working as a kitchen boy on several Italian cruise lines. Arriving penniless in New York in 1924, he made his living for a few years doing menial work at various hotels around town. After a stint in the midwest, he moved to Los Angeles in 1933, founding a restaurant called Chianti in 1938. After a low start, Ed Sullivan stopped for dinner one night and wrote about it in his newspaper column. Chianti soon began to attract celebrities like Lucille Ball and Errol Flynn. Salta’s career finally took off.

Returning to New York in 1951, Salta opened a place called Mercurio with a partner, then branched out on his own in 1953 with his storied namesake restaurant on West 56th Street. At a time when Italian restaurants were synonymous with red-checkered tablecloths with candles stuck in straw-covered Chianti bottles, his elegant ambiance and offerings of Italian food as it was and is cooked in its native land were a revelation.

You can read more about Romeo Salta in his 1998 New York Times obituary.

A funny story…

A great part of the fun going to Romeo Salta was the chance to catch a glimpse of its rich and famous patrons. I remember, for instance, we once sat next to an elderly James Farley, who had been FDR’s campaign director, Postmaster General, and later head of Coca-Cola International. Since the tables were close together, he and Dad struck up a conversation, and we got to hear a few of his fascinating reminiscences.

But the most memorable moment from our visits to Romeo Salta was seeing Raymond Burr. He was an actor best known for playing Perry Mason in the eponymous 1960s TV series and later “Ironside”, a wheelchair-bound detective for the San Francisco police force, in the 1970s. We happened to be seated near the entrance to the restaurant. From our table, we could see the patrons coming in and out. Well, in saunters Mr. Burr. One of my sisters, who was a big fan of Ironside at the time, blurts out—well within earshot mind you—” Look, it’s Ironsides! It’s Ironsides!” We all squirmed in embarrassment, trying to look as nonchalant as possible. As soon as he was out of sight, I turned and replied: “Yeah, and it must be a miracle, ’cause he’s walking!”

Romeo Salta's Easter Salad

 Print Recipe

Romeo Salta’s Easter Salad

Course: AntipastoCuisine: Italian, Italian-AmericanKeyword: salad

Ingredients

  • 1 lb 500g frozen peas blanched, drained, and cooled
  • 1/4 lb 150 g cooked ham cut into cubes
  • 1 head Boston lettuce

For the garnish:

  • A few anchovy fillets
  • Olives green and/or black
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs cut into wedges (optional)

For the dressing:

  • 1/2 cup 125 ml olive oil
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

  • Blanch the peas in boiling water. Just let the water come back to the boil and let it simmer for perhaps a minute, then drain in a large colander. Rinse the peas in cold water to stop the cooking, then let them drain until they are perfectly dry.
  • Line a salad bowl with the Boston lettuce leaves, using as much as you need to line your bowl.
  • In a separate mixing bowl, mix the drained peas and cubed ham together, then pile the mixture on top of the salad leaves.
  • Arrange the anchovy fillets, olives and, if using, wedges of hard-boiled egg on top of the peas and ham.
  • Whisk together the dressing ingredients until they are perfectly emulsified. Taste and adjust for seasoning, then pour over the salad.
  • Serve immediately.

Related:

Romeo Salta, Dining Pioneer In Manhattan, Is Dead at 93 – The New York Times (nytimes.com)

The Pleasures of Italian Cooking: Romeo Salta, Roberto Caramico, Myra Waldo: 9780026067904: Amazon.com: Books


What is the Best Black Diesel Coffee?

What is the Best Black Diesel Coffee?

Review: Black Diesel Coffee Guatemala Huehuetenango

Originally Posted on March 7, 2021by Margaret

This is the second bag of coffee I received from Black Diesel Coffee. Black Diesel is a craft coffee company dedicated to quality, community, and coffee education. I haven’t had a chance to visit their shop in person yet (not surprising, since I live in Texas and the global pandemic is still going…

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What is the Best Black Diesel Coffee?

Review: Black Diesel Coffee Guatemala Huehuetenango

Originally Posted on March 7, 2021by Margaret


This is the second bag of coffee I received from Black Diesel Coffee. Black Diesel is a craft coffee company dedicated to quality, community, and coffee education. I haven’t had a chance to visit their shop in person yet (not surprising, since I live in Texas and the global pandemic is still going on!) but I would really like to go the next time I am in Michigan if nothing else to see their cozy outdoor igloos available for rent!

Whole bean: A wonderfully decadent aroma of dark chocolate and malt wafted from this bag as soon as I opened it. Very sweet!

French press: This coffee strongly reminds me of hot cocoa. It struck me as a little under-sweet – I normally don’t add sugar or milk to my coffee but I almost feel like this particular preparation could use just a touch of sugar to round out the chocolaty flavor. I enjoyed the smooth mouthfeel.

Chemex: I miscalculated my grind size and the total brew time was a little longer than I intended (close to 5 minutes). The result wasn’t bitter but it was probably a little stronger than it would have been otherwise. Still, the coffee was heavy with dark chocolate flavor, and it got fudgier as the coffee cooled.

                       Free Offer. Click Here To Learn More!


V60: This wasn’t my favorite preparation method for these beans. It’s possible my extraction time was too long (my total time was 3:10), but I think something about the pour-over method brings out slightly more bitter, harsher flavors from these beans than the immersion methods do. These harsher notes faded some as the coffee cooled, but it was noticeably unbalanced to my palate, especially given what I had next…

AeroPress: Wow. This cup was creamy and sweet, full-bodied and decadent. At the time of writing this review, I have been setting up and experimenting with a new microphone for music/Zoom calls, and while I thought my old mic was decent, hearing the result from my new mic is just staggering in how much more beautiful the sound is. That’s kind of how I feel drinking thus Guatemala Huehuetenango made with the other brewing methods, and then from the AeroPress! Hands down, my favorite way of preparing these beans.

I didn’t try these beans brewed as espresso, but I did pull a shot of this via my AeroPress plus the Prismo attachment, to get an idea of the flavor notes that might come out when ground and brewed closer to espresso-style. I didn’t like the result as much vs. when brewed in the “traditional” AeroPress method, so I’d recommend not using the Prismo for this.

Summary: In my opinion, it’s a little harder to get optimum results for these beans in pour-over methods. Stick with immersion methods like the French press and the AeroPress. The AeroPress in particular resulted in coffee that was an incredible treat to drink. I felt like I was getting away with something!

From the roaster: melon, creamy, chocolate

Black Diesel Coffee Guatemala Huehuetenango

Review conducted 12-14 days post-roast.

Disclaimer: I received this product gratis in exchange for a fair and honest review. Even though I received this for free, I treat and test it the same way as if I had paid for it out of my own pocket.

Related:

Coffee blog from baristas to coffee lovers (baristainstitute.com)

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Review: Case Coffee Roasters Guatemala Bella Carmona Antigua (Ashland, Oregon)October 31, 2015In “AeroPress”

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How To Make Carpaccio Smoked Salmon

How To Make Carpaccio Smoked Salmon

Carpaccio di salmone affumicato (Smoked Salmon Carpaccio)

Originally Published by Frank 27 December 2020antipasti, Veneto37 Comments

Here’s an elegant yet quick and easy starter that would fit perfectly into just about any menu: Carpaccio di salmone affumicato, or Smoked Salmon Carpaccio.

Classic carpaccio, of course, is made with thinly sliced beef. But the term carpaccio has evolved into a…

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How To Make Carpaccio Smoked Salmon

Carpaccio di salmone affumicato (Smoked Salmon Carpaccio)

Originally Published by Frank 27 December 2020antipastiVeneto37 Comments

Carpaccio di salmone affumicato (Smoked Salmon Carpaccio)

Here’s an elegant yet quick and easy starter that would fit perfectly into just about any menu: Carpaccio di salmone affumicato, or Smoked Salmon Carpaccio.

Classic carpaccio, of course, is made with thinly sliced beef. But the term carpaccio has evolved into a kind of passepartout for any number of dishes featuring thin slices of meat or fish, typically dressed with a light vinaigrette and perhaps some aromatic herbs. In this incarnation, thin slices of smoked salmon are dressed simply with an emulsion of oil and lemon, to which I like to add just a pinch of finely minced parsley. If you like, you can gussy up your carpaccio with all sorts of garnishes: a few capers, shaved fennel, arugula, even pomegranate seeds. Whatever strikes your fancy, really.

Smoked Salmon Carpaccio is simple itself to make, but it makes quite the impression, so it’s apt for a special occasion. To me, it’s an ideal way to begin a cenone di san Silvestro, or New Year’s Eve dinner on a simple but elegant note. That means less time in the kitchen, and more time sipping champagne and enjoying the evening with your loved ones. I call that a win-win.

Your dream of working from home and enjoying the good life has arrived. Click here to learn more!  

Ingredients

Serves 4-6

  • 500g (1 lb) smoked salmon, thinly sliced

For the dressing:

  • Freshly squeezed juice of 1/2 small lemon
  • A few leaves of fresh parsley, finely minced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 dl (1 cup) olive oil

For garnish (optional):

  • Capers
  • Shavings of fresh fennel
  • Thinly sliced red onion
  • Arugula
  • Avocado wedges
  • Pomegranate seeds

Directions

Arrange thin slices of smoked salmon on a plate (if you like, over a bed of tender greens as pictured).

Then, whisk together all the dressing ingredients together until you have a smooth emulsion. Spoon this over the salmon slices.

Allow the salmon to macerate for just 5 minutes or so before serving, topped with one more garnishes if you like. Some crusty bread to go with is always welcome.

Notes on Smoked Salmon Carpaccio

As we’ve pointed out on this blog, the original carpaccio, as invented by Giuseppe Cipriani for his renowned Venice bar, was made with sliced beef fillets, pounded paper-thin then dressed with a creamy mayonnaise-based sauce.  The charm of using smoked salmon, of course, is that you can buy it pre-sliced, which eliminates an awful lot of work. And the resulting contrast of orange and green, while not true to Carpaccio’s style of contrasting reds and whites, is lovely to behold all the same.

The choice of smoked salmon is up to you, but I particularly like Nova Scotia, the kind used for lox and bagels, as it’s only lightly smoked. For a more decisive smokiness, you could opt for Scottish smoked salmon. Personally, I find sockeye salmon’s darker color and fishier flavor less appealing as a carpaccio, but if you like it don’t let me stop you.

And obviously, you want to best quality olive oil you can manage to find, although I would opt for a lighter one, perhaps one from Liguria. Those very fruity and green olive oils, as wonderful as they are, could overwhelm the flavor of the fish.

And speaking of which, go light on the lemon juice. You want just enough to brighten the olive oil but no more. Since lemons vary in size and acidity, you may want to start with a few drops and add more to dressing until you’re pleased with the results. Also true for the salt. It may come as a surprise that you’d need any, but a small pinch, just enough to enhance the other flavors without drawing attention to itself, is what you want.

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Variations

As mentioned above, the basic recipe for Smoked Salmon Carpaccio lends itself to a huge variety of garnishes. I’m partial to either laying my carpaccio on a bed of tender greens or else topping it with arugula leaves, which pairs particularly nicely with smoked salmon, I think. But the list given in the ingredients list is really just examples. Let your imagination run wild!

Besides its usual role as a starter, Smoked Salmon Carpaccio can double as a light pescatarian main course as well.

Making Ahead

You can plate the salmon well ahead, cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate until you’re almost ready to serve. The dressing, too, can be made ahead. Let the salmon come back to room temperature, then nap it with the dressing and top with any garnishes. What I wouldn’t do, however, is dress the salmon too far ahead of time as the dressing will become overwhelming if the salmon is left to macerate too long.

Carpaccio di salmone affumicato (Smoked Salmon Carpaccio)

 Print Recipe

Carpaccio di salmone affumicato

Smoked Salmon CarpaccioTotal Time15 mins Course: AntipastoCuisine: ItalianKeyword: raw, seafood

Ingredients

  • 500g 1 lb smoked salmon thinly sliced

For the dressing:

  • 1/2 small lemon, juice of freshly squeezed
  • A few leaves of fresh parsley, finely minced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 250ml 1 cup olive oil

For the garnish (optional):

  • Capers
  • Shavings of fresh fennel
  • Thinly sliced red onion
  • Arugula
  • Avocado wedges
  • Pomegranate seeds

Instructions

  • Arrange thin slices of smoked salmon on a plate (if you like, over a bed of tender greens as pictured).
  • Then, whisk together all the dressing ingredients together until you have a smooth emulsion. Spoon this over the salmon slices.
  • Allow the salmon to macerate for just 5 minutes or so before serving, topped with one more garnishes if you like. Some crusty bread to go with is always welcome.

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