Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Ad Astra Review - Anouchka's Grandmother's Salmon Pâté by Cat Sparks

What Is It? Salmon blended with cream cheese and spring onions covered with chopped pecans and chives.

This needs a kick of
Cayenne pepper for flavor
And use red salmon

Review: The second recipe in the Ad Astra Cookbook under the heading "Savory Snacks" is one for salmon pâté from Cat Sparks. I tried this recipe out on my regular game group, and it got mixed reviews from them, mostly because they didn't like the texture (and one just doesn't like fish, which I did not know until then, but didn't surprise me at all).

The redhead and I, on the other hand, found this to be quite good. The recipe is basically canned red salmon, cream cheese, sour cream, spring onions, and cayenne pepper blended together with a coating of finely chopped pecans and chives. The recipe is pretty easy, and doesn't require an oven or any equipment other than bowls, knives and some sort of blending equipment - the recipe says to use a food processor, but I used a stick mixer which worked just fine. We ate it on crackers, which seems like the ideal way to eat it, although the redhead suggested possibly adding it to pasta with an alfredo sauce, a suggestion that seems like it would be worth investigating.

The instructions say that the recipe makes a lot more than one might expect, and that seems to be accurate. When I blended the cream cheese and salmon, the volume of the mixture ballooned quite noticeably. I suggest being generous with the spices, especially the cayenne pepper, as the mix is just a little bland unless one does so. Even though you are using red salmon which has more flavor than pink salmon, the mix of fish and cream cheese doesn't really have much kick on its own. The recipe says to shape the mixture into a log, but it was so sticky that the best I could manage was an kind of half sphere. The pecans and chives also add a lot to the dish, with their crunch adding a needed break from the creamy texture of the pâté itself.

Overall, this was a really good recipe. I can see this being something that I'll bring to family holiday gathering as an appetizer. If I was going to make this for anything less than a large gathering, I would definitely halve the recipe. The redhead and I have been eating it for three days now and we still have some left. On the other hand, it is good enough that we're not tired of it yet, so you could take that as an endorsement.

Previous recipe in Ad Astra: Ajvar by K.V. Johansen
Next recipe in Ad Astra: Bastilla by Erin M. Hartshorn

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