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Salmon and Beet Carpaccio with Pickled Relish

Serves 6.


    Holiday celebrations have expanded in many different ways. What was once a traditional full-sized bird that had cooks up for hours to prepare—only to fall into a slump after serving—has now morphed into offerings beyond the heavy dinner. Christmas brunch is becoming a popular attraction at various restaurants, and their formal offerings are anything but the big bird.


    Easy roasted beetroots

    Place unpeeled beetroots in baking dish. Add 1/4 cup (60 mL) water and cover dish tightly. Bake in 350 F (180 C) oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until beets are tender when pierced with skewer. Remove and cool. Peel and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Use as above, or dice and toss into salads.

    No preserved lemon? Make your own.

    Although preserved lemon is available at some health food stores and specialty ethnic stores, it’s easy to make your own. Wash 3 organic lemons; cut in half and discard seeds. Very finely dice whole lemons and place in bowl. Stir in 2 Tbsp (30 mL) raw cane sugar and 1 Tbsp (15 mL) kosher salt. Stir to blend. Spoon into sealable jar, tighten, and let rest for 30 minutes.

    For an interesting flavour twist, try any of the optional add-ins to the pickled relish: garlic cloves, black peppercorns, fennel seeds, and coriander seeds.

    Quirky quenelles

    What are quenelles, you ask? They’re egg-shaped dollops from a firm, creamy mixture that add elegance to any dish. Find 2 small spoons with pointy ends and dip them into warm water. Shake off excess water and, with one spoon, take a scoop of quark and pass the mixture repeatedly between the spoons, smoothing each side until a neat quenelle is formed. Practice makes perfect!

    Make-ahead tips

    • Relish can be prepared and refrigerated in tightly covered container for several weeks.
    • Cure salmon. Wipe clean and thinly slice. Tightly seal and refrigerate overnight.
    • Roast beetroots, and refrigerate overnight.
    • Prepare remaining ingredients and refrigerate separately.
    • Assemble the morning of the brunch, about an hour before.


    Salmon and Beet Carpaccio with Pickled Relish


    • 2 tsp (10 mL) rainbow-coloured peppercorns
    • 1 small bunch fresh dill, chopped, divided
    • 1/4 cup (60 mL) each kosher salt and raw or organic cane sugar
    • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) lemon zest
    • 1 lb (450 g) salmon fillet, skin on, pin bones removed
    • 1/2 small red onion
    • 1 bunch radishes
    • 3/4 cup (180 mL) each of distilled white vinegar and water
    • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) honey
    • 1 tsp (5 mL) whole mustard seeds
    • 1 small yellow beetroot, roasted, peeled, and refrigerated
    • 1 small red beetroot, roasted, peeled, and refrigerated
    • 1 navel orange, peeled and segmented
    • 2 preserved lemons, drained and diced
    • 1/4 cup (60 mL) quark cheese, optional
    • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) lemon-flavoured olive oil
    • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • Fresh pea shoots or micro greens, for garnish


    Per serving:

    • calories210
    • protein18g
    • fat10g
      • saturated fat2g
      • trans fat0g
    • carbohydrates14g
      • sugars8g
      • fibre3g
    • sodium523mg



    Our delicious and visual cured salmon dish is a beautiful example of a sophisticated trend. Itu2019s relatively easy to make and will wow your guests; just keep in mind that youu2019ll have to prepare the salmon 2 to 3 days in advance. Start off your menu with a lovely leek and potato soup and follow it with Salmon and Beet Carpaccio. Finish with a semifreddo cheesecake (a semifrozen dessert much like a frozen mousse) that you can make and freeze in advance.


    In small skillet over medium-high heat, heat peppercorns until they start to crackle and pop. Remove from heat. Cool, then crush in mortar with pestle. Transfer to small bowl and stir in dill, then all the kosher salt, sugar, and lemon zest. Stir to fully blend.


    Spread half the dill mixture in bottom of glass baking dish large enough to hold salmon. Place salmon on top of dill mixture, skin side down. Evenly scatter remaining dill mixture overtop salmon, pressing lightly to adhere. Wrap dish tightly with plastic wrap to seal, and refrigerate for 2 to 3 days. Turn salmon in dish once a day, basting with liquid that collects; reseal and continue to refrigerate.


    While salmon is curing, prepare pickled relish. Peel and thinly slice onion, using mandoline or very sharp chefu2019s knife. Trim tops and bottoms from radishes and thinly slice on mandoline. Arrange in alternate layers in large Mason jar. Combine vinegar, water, honey, and mustard seeds in small saucepan. Bring to a boil. Pour mixture overtop onion and radishes. Bring to room temperature. Seal and refrigerate. Can be eaten immediately or refrigerated for several weeks, although crispness will lessen after 1 week.


    When ready to serve, gently scrape seasonings from salmon and blot dry with paper towel. Place salmon skin side down on cutting board. Using very sharp carving knife, slice salmon into paper-thin slices. Thinly slice beetroots using mandoline or sharp knife. Arrange salmon and beetroot slices alternately on large serving platter with some pickled relish. Scatter with orange wedges and diced preserved lemons. If using quark, shape into small quenelles (egg-shaped dollops) and arrange on top. Drizzle dish with oil and lightly season with salt and pepper. Scatter a few pea shoots or micro greens overtop and serve with pumpernickel rye bread, mini toasted bagels, and gluten-free seed crackers.


    Like this recipe?

    This recipe is part of the Festive Fusions collection.



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    For this cross-cultural take on tacos, sockeye salmon is marinated with yogurt and a fragrant but mild tandoori-style spice full of the warm flavours of cumin, coriander, nutmeg, and cardamom. After grilling, omega-3-rich salmon is enclosed in a warm corn tortilla and topped with spicy Mexican-style radishes and red onion pickled with lime juice and jalapenos for a kick of heat.

    Toast your spices

    Toasting whole spices will give you superior fragrance and flavour. If you’re new to this process, try it with some whole coriander and whole cumin. Toast a small amount of each separately in a hot pan until seeds begin to pop and smell fragrant. Remove from heat and allow seeds to cool slightly, then grind using a spice grinder or clean coffee grinder dedicated to this purpose. After grinding, measure out the amount required for the recipe and save the rest.