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Beet Cured Hiramasa on Scallion “Pikelets”

By: Sally James - Author, Chef and Cleanseas Culinary Consultant

Makes: about 20 "Pikelets"

Time Required: 1 hour (with 8-24 hours curing time)

Ingredients

  1. 2 lb Hiramasa loin

For The Cure

  1. 1 fresh beet, peeled and chopped

  2. 2 tablespoons gin

  3. 1 teaspoon fennel seeds

  4. 1/4 cup sugar

  5. 1/4 cup salt

  6. Fresh dill

For The Pikelets (Blinis)

  1. 1 cup self-rising flour (or 1 cup flour and 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder)

  2. Pinch of salt

  3. 1 scallion/green onion, finely diced

  4. 1/4 cup dill leaves

  5. 1 egg

  6. 3/4 cup milk

  7. Butter and olive oil for cooking

To Serve

  1. Crème fraiche or sour cream, dill or fennel fronds


Instructions

  1. To cure the fish, place beet in a food processor with the remaining ingredients for ‘the cure’. Blend until smooth.
  2. Line a baking dish or tray with large enough sheet of plastic wrap to wrap around the fish. Place fish on top and spread with the cure – turn fish a few times to cover all the sides. Wrap tightly with the plastic wrap and refrigerate 8-24 hours.
  3. Once cured for desired time, remove from the frig and rinse off the cure. Pat dry and cover with fresh plastic wrap and return to fridge until ready to use.
  4. To make the Pikelets (blinis), sift flour and salt into a bowl, stir through the scallion and dill and make a well in the center.
  5. Whisk the egg and milk and pour into the well, stirring until just combined.
  6. Heat a small nob of butter with a teaspoon of oil in a non-stick frying pan on medium-high heat. When melted, add small spoonfuls of the mixture to the pan making about a 2 inch pikelet, leaving an inch between each. When bubbles appear on the surface, flip and cook 1 minute longer.
  7. Place on paper towels while you cook the remainder. (If preferred they can be kept warm in the oven on low heat).
  8. To serve, remove plastic wrap from the cured Hiramasa. Slice the fish thinly. Place a spoon of Crème fraiche on each pikelet and top with 2 slices of the fish. Decorate with dill or fennel fronds.

Pairing note: This is beautiful with champagne or sparkling wine, a dry fruity white wine or Rosé.

General Note: Pikelets are an Australian term for small pancakes, like blinis, perfect for serving smoked fish on and serving for breakfast, high tea or as a starter.  This cured fish will keep for 1 week in the fridge and is more than you’ll need for the pikelets. Enjoy mixed through pasta, on a sandwich with cucumber and goat cheese or just sliced to serve with cheese and crackers.

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