In preparation for our trip to Paris a few years ago, I reread Joanne Harris’s Chocolat, Blackberry Wine (my personal favourite) and Five Quarters of the Orange, taking note of all the beautifully described foods (and drinks) I was going to try.
There was just one problem… Many French delicacies were not made with the vegetarian in mind. Think of foie gras, most pâté, duck confit, escargot. Even when I used to eat meat, it never ever extended to offal.
It didn’t take long for the disappointment to dwindle down to nothing; there were just too many quiches, crepes (both savoury and sweet) and pastries to try that I promptly forgot all about fancy-named offal ‘treats’.
Well, until the next time that I reread Five Quarters of the Orange. In it, many characters dine on rillettes, often referred to as ‘poor man’s pâté’. It is traditionally made with pork cooked in fat until tender and then cooled with even more fat until a paste has formed. It is then slathered on bread and eaten at room temperature.
Doesn’t sound very appetising, does it?
And then, years later and quite by accident, I stumbled across a salmon rillettes recipe by David Lebovitz. In Joanne Harris’s words: ‘The right circumstances sometimes happen of their own accord, slyly, without fanfare, without warning. Layman’s alchemy. . . The magic of everyday things’ (Blackberry Wine).
The combination of ingredients and method used to create salmon rillettes is nothing short of layman’s alchemy.
Happy Bastille Day everyone.
Ingredients Method Storage: The rillettes can be made up to two days before and refrigerated. They can also be frozen, well-wrapped, for up to two months. Recipe by David Lebovitz as found on his blog.
Storage: The rillettes can be made up to two days before and refrigerated. They can also be frozen, well-wrapped, for up to two months.
Recipe by David Lebovitz as found on his blog.