Wild red salmon, perfectly seasoned and nestled into puff pastry.
This recipe was originally created for A Series of Unfortunate Cooking Lessons, based on the book series by Lemony Snicket. If you are the type of person who enjoys delicious food and interesting conversation, I suggest you cook the recipes I've created for this this series rather than reading the books, which are filled with badly-prepared food and unpleasant dining companions.
1 can (7.5 oz) wild salmon, preferably red (unsalted)
2 Tb Olive oil
2 Tb creme fraiche at room temperature
1 Tb plus 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon minced thyme
2 Tablespoons minced parsley
2 fat garlic cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt (plus a pinch more, if needed, at the end)
Fresh ground pepper to taste
1 14-oz sheet frozen puff pastry such as DuFour, defrosted
Flour for rolling
Chives cut into spears approx 1 inch long
1. Drain the salmon and put it in a medium bowl. Remove any large bones. (These are completely edible, and very healthy to eat! You may leave them in for a more rustic approach, but to make a nice hors d'oeuvre without any crunch surprises, remove them.)
2. Add the olive oil, creme fraiche, Dijon mustard, thyme and parsley.
3. Use a garlic press or microplane to pulverize the garlic and add it to the salmon.
4. Add the salt and pepper and mix everything to blend thoroughly. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper if needed. Set the salmon mixture aside.
5. Make sure the oven rack is in the middle position, and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
6. Choose a very clean surface to roll out the pastry. Lightly flour the clean countertop and carefully remove the pastry from the packaging, laying it on the floured surface without allowing it to break.
7. Gently roll the pastry with a rolling pin to nudge it into a rough rectangle, smoothing the center fold flat. Cut it into portions and fit them into the mini-muffin tin. Spoon a small portion (about 1/2 teaspoon) of salmon into each pastry. Do not overfill, or it may spill out and burn on the pan as the puff pastry rises.
8. Bake for 14-16 minutes, until light golden brown and puffy. (If the pastry deflates after you remove it from the oven, it is underbaked.) Let cool a few minutes in the pan, then remove puffs to a rack.
9. Spoon a small dab of creme fraiche onto each puff, and add 3 chive spears to stand up vertically. Serve to your impressed and delighted guests!