Salmon Mousse with quick Mayonnaise

You know how it is, your mate rings up from the market to tell you that they've got big bunches of dill for sale for a quid, so you ask the wife to get the two tail ends of salmon out of the freezer with the intention of making Gravadlax only to realise, when it's defrosted, that one, there's three pieces of fish not two, and two, it's too thin to be worth the effort of curing it. Little things like this are the stuff my life's made of! The dill got stuffed into a bottle of vinegar; I'll use it later in the year for pickling: that left three pieces of salmon so hence this recipe for a salmon mousse!

Salmon Mousse

So what to use for a mousse? Salmon? Check. Eggs? Check. Double cream? Check - oops, un-check, we need it for the strawberries. Something similar? Yoghurt? Check - oops, un-check, it's grown a fir coat. Herbs? Check, there's fennel and parsley in the garden, either will be suitable. Cream cheese? No, we've scoffed it! Mayonnaise? That's it, I'll make some Mayonnaise:

Quick Mayo

I used a 'stick' blender for this, you could also use a liquidizer or food processor but add the oil gradually whilst whisking - likewise if you make it by hand.

Put a whole egg into the goblet that came with the stick blender, or suitable alternative, and add about ¼ tsp Dijon mustard, a pinch of salt & pepper, and a few splashes of vinegar or lemon juice. Add ½ pint of oil (I used a light rape seed oil for this; olive would have overpowered the salmon), then mix it on full power. If it's too thick add a drop or two of water. Adjust seasoning, vinegar, or lemon to taste.

The Mousse

8 - 10 oz Cooked salmon
4 oz Mayonnaise
3 Egg whites
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp (1 sachet) Gelatine dissolved in warm water
Lemon or vinegar to taste
A couple of tablespoons of chopped dill or other green herb

Purée the salmon with a stick blender or food processor keeping an ounce or two of the salmon aside if you don't want a completely smooth mousse. Mix with the Mayonnaise. Whisk the egg whites until almost at the 'stiff peak' stage and fold into the salmon mixture along with the gelatine and herbs and any salmon put aside previously (strain the gelatine to remove any bits). Season to taste. Pour into a lightly oiled mould and leave in the fridge to set.

This recipe is fairly versatile, as well as just eating it with a salad you could present it in the style of a cold souffléé or using a salmon mould. You could also line ramekins with smoked salmon and make salmon parcels for a starter or fill rolls of smoked salmon with it and present salmon cigars as a canapé - the possibilities are endless. I'm also fairly sure that it will be fine made with whipped cream or yoghurt; I fancy trying it with yoghurt, I think that it's tangy flavour would offset the 'earthiness' of the salmon very well.

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