It was red and white here this week. Not only did we celebrate Valentine’s Day in style, but we’re showing our support for Canada in the winter Olympics. The energy is contagious, and seeing the Olympians realize their dreams and goals is inspiring.
There are lots of stories coming out of Sochi about how prepared they were for the Olympics. I definitely wouldn’t see myself designing hotels or hosting a massive sporting event lasting weeks in the winter, yet we can create a beautiful dinner at a much smaller venue and have it go off without a problem. Why? Well, practice does make perfect and thankfully we get a lot of practice.
This week I was thinking about how much Russian food I am really exposed to. I can’t say there has been a lot. No, I’m not thinking about Russian dressing, but I did remember the Stratford Chef School and one of my dishes was the wonderful Coulibiac. Don’t be afraid. It’s so easy, delicious and, well, a bit old-school. Salmon, egg, mushrooms, onion, spinach wrapped in puff pastry. So popular Escoffier made it his own, which means it can work for you too. Enjoy.
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4 tbsp diced red onion
1 cup of assorted mushrooms, sliced
1 cup of spinach, wilted
2 eggs, boiled
4 six-oz portions of salmon or trout
1 pkg puff pastry
In very hot pan, sauté mushrooms in vegetable oil, add onions and toss, until tender. Turn the burner very low to evaporate all the mushroom juices;
In another hot pan, wilt spinach, then put in strainer and drain off excess water;
Roll out pastry to double the size of the fish, place crepe on top of pastry – a 6×6 tile of pastry works for 1 salmon portion;
Layer mushrooms and spinach on top of the crepe;
Season salmon with salt and pepper, place in hot pan and sear on both sides (it is best to remove the skin);
Place seasoned salmon trout on the top, grate eggs and place on top of fish;
Fold the crepe over the salmon to encase the toppings and fish. Glaze the pastry with egg by brushing the wash around the sides. Fold the pastry over the salmon and crimp the pastry to seal the edges;
Slice the top of the pastry to allow the steam to escape and egg wash the parcel;
Bake in oven at 400 F for 10 minutes, turn down to 350 F and bake the rest of the way, to a temperature of 150 F.