This is perfect on a cool summer evening as a starter or served cold as part of a buffet or picnic. A very pretty light terrine that can be served warm or cold, but best not served at fridge temperature, as the cold deadens the flavour of the fish.
- 200g (7 oz) smoked salmon, chopped
- 45ml (3 tablespoons) dry vermouth
- 55g (2 oz) butter
- 1 medium leek, white part only, finely chopped
- 750g (1½ lbs) par-smoked salmon fillets, skinned
- juice of 1 lemon
- the zest of 2 lemons (reserve the lemons)
- 300ml (½ pint) whipping cream, chilled
- 2 medium egg whites, chilled
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Marinate the smoked salmon for 30 minutes in the dry vermouth and a good twist of pepper.
- Preheat the oven to Fan 160°C / 180°C / 350°F / Gas Mark 4. Lightly oil a 1kg (2 lb) loaf tin and line the base with baking parchment.
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan and gently fry the chopped leek for 10 minutes until soft and golden, but not browned. Cool.
- Cut up the par-smoked salmon roughly and place in a food processor with the cooled leek, half the lemon juice, lemon zest, whipping cream and egg whites. Process in short bursts for 1 or 2 minutes until the mixture is smooth (over-processing can lead to the mixture curdling, so keep an eye on it!). Taste and adjust seasoning by adding more lemon juice and pepper - salt only if it needs it.
- Peel the zested lemons with a knife removing all skin and pith. Slice very thinly and arrange over the base of the loaf tin, overlappping them until the base is covered.
- Carefully spoon just under half of the creamy salmon mousse over the lemon slices, and level with the back of a spoon.
- Mix the basil with the chopped smoked salmon and scatter this evenly over the salmon mousse. Spoon the remaining salmon mousse over the chopped smoked salmon in small dollops then spread them out to join them up and cover the chopped smoked salmon completely.
- Cover with buttered foil and set the loaf tin in a deep roasting tin. Fill with boiling water to come as high up the sides of the loaf tin as possible and bake for about 40 minutes or until a thin-bladed knife inserted into the centre of the terrine comes out clean.
- When cooked, lift out of the roasting tin and cool until just warm or cold. Invert onto a board and cut into neat slices. Serve warm or cold with a pretty salad, or even a warm potato salad.