Juicy salmon eggs add a delicate crunch to this luxurious pasta dish. If you prefer a more subtle fish flavor, substitute trout roe and smoked trout for salmon roe and smoked salmon. Plus: recipes and pasta tips
Salt 1/2 pound dry tagliarini or fettuccine 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 chopped shallot 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fresh cream or sour cream 1 tablespoon finely chopped flat-leaf parsley 1 teaspoon chopped tarragon Freshly ground pepper 2 ounces thinly sliced smoked salmon, cut into 1/2 inch (1/2 cup) ribbons 4 ounces salmon caviar
How to do it
Boil a large pot of water and add a large pinch of salt. Add the tagliarini and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving approximately 1/2 cup of cooking water.
In a large deep skillet, melt butter over moderate heat. When the foam decreases, add the minced shallot and cook over moderately low heat for 2 minutes, stirring. Add the fresh cream, parsley and tarragon. Add about 1/4 cup of reserved pasta cooking water and season with pepper. Add the pasta and ribbons of smoked salmon and stir well. Add up to 2 more tablespoons of the reserved cooking water if the pasta seems too dry. Remove from the fire. Add three quarters of the caviar and stir gently. Serve in shallow bowls, garnished with remaining caviar.
IKURA (SALMON CAVIAR)
How to easily separate and cure salmon roe in a dashi brine to make ikura (Japanese salmon caviar).
With the spawning season in full swing, the salmon is filled to the gills with roe. If you can find a skein of salmon roe at your fishmonger’s (or you know someone who’s going to fish for salmon), 5 minutes and a handful of ingredients is enough to turn that ugly roe sack into a decadent container. ikura (salmon caviar)
Unlike the flabby salty gofo that comes out of the jars, the homemade ikura is truly sublime. The thick silky caviar pearls sparkle like gemstones. Pour a tablespoon into your mouth and each orb bursts with a satisfying pop, sending its rich and savory content flooding your sweet, salty, and umami taste receivers in a wave of culinary happiness.
I’ve put together a little video to show you how to separate the roe from the skein and this technique should work with almost any salmon or trout roe. Just be sure to select a skein of roe with large ripe pearls. Immature roe have weaker sacs that will break when you try to separate them from the skein.
1 1/2 cups yogurt
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon sake
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon salt
2 large skeins of fresh salmon roe
- Make the brine by adding the dashi, soy sauce, sake, sugar, and salt to a bowl and stir until the salt and sugar are completely dissolved.
- Watch the video for instructions on how to separate caviar beads from skein.
- Rinse the caviar with cold water and then put it in a container with enough brine to cover it.
- Save any remaining brine to use as an all-purpose seasoning or for another batch of ikura.