Posts Tagged ‘ rillette ’

Salmon Rillette

[Woah, I can’t believe my last post was in June. It’s been way too long.]

Salmon Rillette: a spread that I had first experienced whilst enjoying a meal with friends in the New York location of Bouchon Bakery, one of Thomas Keller’s many restaurants that he opened after enjoying the phenomenal success of the French Laundry, a restaurant that garnered numerous international awards and produced innovative chefs that have gone on to achieve similar success such as Grant Achatz of Alinea or Eric Ziebold of CityZen. It was a perfect combination of smoked and fresh salmon; several months later, I have finally decided to attempt a recreation as detailed in his book: Bouchon (

Ingredients (Not pictured: lemon juice, olive oil, salt, white pepper)

The ingredients: the recipe called quite a few things-fresh salmon, smoked salmon, shallots, chives, butter, creme fraiche, pernod, white pepper, olive oil, and lemon juice. After trekking around to various supermarkets and still unable to find any trace of creme fraiche, I had to settle with sour cream as the closest alternative.

Starting off, I skinned the salmon and trimmed off the dark meat as the recipe dictates–the latter I assume was primarily for aesthetic purposes as the darker flesh would look less appealing in the finished product. I marinated the salmon in Pernod, an anise-flavored liqueur, and white pepper for 40 minutes in the fridge–flipping the fillet halfway through.

While waiting for the fish to marinate, I used this time to prep the other ingredients. 1/2 cup of shallots needed to be minced and sweated with 1 tbs. of butter, smoked salmon needed to be trimmed of the dark meat and cut into 1/8″ pieces, two yolks needed to be beaten until slightly lighter, and a stick of butter needed to be whipped and combined with a 1 tbs. of sour cream/creme fraiche [random aside: if you have not seen this episode of SP, I would highly recommend it.].

After, I put in the salmon to steam for about 6 minutes until medium rare. In a large bowl after breaking up the salmon in smaller chunks, I combined all the ingredients–and voila, salmon rillette! Unfortunately, the spread will only hold for 2 days–that is unless it is sealed somehow, which calls for clarified butter. Having never used or made clarified butter, I found the process to be rather simple. 1) Heat up butter (but do not let it brown). 2) Remove from heat and let it cool for 5 minutes and scrape off white foam on top. 3) Carefully pour off liquid. 4) You now have clarified butter. Scoop some salmon and relocate to smaller vessels and pour a good amount of liquid clarified butter over top to seal. Salmon Rillette should now keep for a week.

Salmon Rillette at Bouchon was served on croutons but if you’re lazy like me, water crackers seem to also do the trick. Sprinkle with chives and serve. Enjoy.

– Jerry