Recipes: Cold Buffet

Spinach Custard, Smoked Sockeye Salmon, Sunflower Seeds and Petals, Nori 

  • 4 garlic cloves sliced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, julienne
  • 1-pound spinach leaves
  • 2 cups heavy cream, warmed
  • 2 cups milk, warmed
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon salt

Place a large sauté pan on medium high heat and add a few tablespoons of oil. Once the oil is hot add the garlic, onion, and sweat for 5 minutes until garlic is golden brown. Add all spinach to the pan and season with salt. Toss the spinach around until completely wilted remove form heat, drain any excess liquid and place on a sheet tray, let come to room temperature.

In a blender place the place the cooked spinach and all remaining ingredients, blend until smooth and pass through a fine mesh sieve.  Line a half sheet tray with plastic wrap and pour the custard base into the lined sheet tray. Carefully place the sheet tray into a 275 degree Fahrenheit oven. Check on the custard every 8 minutes, making sure to spin the sheet tray for even cooking. Once custard has cooked and solidified, remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature. Once cooled, carefully flip the custard on to a cutting board and cut into a desired shape. Garnish the custard with toasted sunflower seeds, slices of smoked salmon, sunflower petals, and julienned nori.

Chilled Terrine of Snow Crab, Melon, and Mint with shaved Zucchini

  • 1 pint of snow crabmeat
  • 1 honeydew melon, cut into rectangle planks (1/2″ diameter)
  • 1 cup picked mint leaves
  • 3 zucchini, shaved on a mandolin and salted for 3 hours
  • 2 quarts crab or fish consommé
  • 1-cup bonito
  • 1 piece Kombu
  • 14 leaves gelatin soaked in ice water

Place cold consommé into a stockpot and add bonito and Kombu. Bring to light simmer and add gelatin leaves, allow time to dissolve (about 10 minutes). Make sure not to bring the liquid to a boil once the gelatin leaves are added. Strain the fortified consommé through cheesecloth, discard the solids.

In a plastic wrap lined terrine mold, add a 1/2″ of consommé, place a few mint leaves in the liquid and put in refrigerator to chill. Once chilled, decoratively place crab, melon and mint on top of the set consommé. Add more liquid to cover and place back in refrigerator to chill. Once fully set, remove the now solid terrine from the mold and remove plastic wrap. Place another sheet of plastic wrap on a work surface and layer the zucchini lengthwise creating a “wrapper” for the terrine. Brush the exterior of the terrine with honey and gently place the terrine on the zucchini. Carefully lift the plastic wrap and wrap it and the zucchini around the terrine and place in the fridge. Once fully chilled, remove the plastic wrap and slice with a very sharp knife.

Smoked Salmon “Bacon” with Pickled Mustard Seeds

  • 4 filets of Sockeye Salmon (pin bones removed)
  • 2 quarts Salt
  • 1-quart sugar
  • 1/4-cup ground juniper berries
  • 20 cloves ground
  • (Pickled mustard seeds, recipe is above)
  • Dijon mustard

Mix all dry ingredients together in a bowl to evenly distribute. Place salmon filets on a sheet tray and bury them in the curing mix. Cover with plastic wrap and let cure for 18 hours. Once the salmon has been cured, remove from the salmon from the fridge and rinse under cold water to remove the cure mix. Thoroughly dry the salmon with paper towels and place back in fridge for 8 hours (uncovered). Once dried, cold smoke salmon for 2 hours, the salmon, should still have a “raw” texture.

After the salmon has been smoked portion into 1.5 oz. strips and sprinkle white sugar on the salmon in an even layer as if making a crème brûlée. Torch the sugared salmon with a blowtorch, caramelizing the sugar making a crispy sugary crust. Garnish the salmon the pickled mustard seeds and Dijon mustard.