I dare you to make it! Well that was this month’s Daring Cook’s challenge on the Daring Kitchen. Wow let me tell you when I read it I was like : Finally something easy! I have never made this before (nor the similar Beef Wellington) but just reading the instructions I knew it was a breeze.

And once more I invited a friend over. I think I am always going to do this cause its more fun then doing it alone and that means I can also share what we made and I am not stuck with leftovers. I live a lone so its just a win-win situation. This time my good friend Johanne came back for a challenge. She also was my ‘guest’ for the Pho Soup challenge.

I really liked this recipe because it was so easy to prepare but it can be so versatile too. You could use it with just veggies or chicken or tofu. What ever. The presentation on the dinner table is just stunning. Only thing I would change is I would make half the cream cheese and herb sauce. the recipe specifies to use half on the fish and half for extras during the meal. In our opinion extra sauce was really unnecessary.

Two personal notes:
a) You can substitute the short-crust with store bought puff pastry…which is what I did.
b) the fish is not seasoned in the recipe but I did with a bit of salt, pepper and dill.

Now for the recipe!

The 2009 Daring Cooks challenge was hosted by Simone of Junglefrog Cooking. Simone chose Salmon en Croute (or alternative recipes for Beef Wellington or Vegetable en Croute) from Good Food Online.

Salmon en Croute

Preparation time:

Total prep time incl. cooking for the Salmon is 50 minutes
Shortcrust pastry : 50 minutes (optional)

Salmon en croute:

Mascarpone or cream cheese 5.2 ounces/150 gr
Watercress, rocket (arugula) and spinach – 0.6 cup/4.2 ounces/120 gr
Shortcrust pastry – 17.6 ounces, 500 gr. Store bought or recipe below
Salmon fillet (skinless)- 17.6 ounce/500 gr
egg – 1 medium sized


1.Heat the oven to 200°C/390 F. Put the mascarpone or cream cheese in a food processor with the watercress, spinach and rocket and whizz the lot until you have a creamy green puree. Season well.

2. Roll the pastry out so you can wrap the salmon in it completely (approx. 2-3 mm thick) and lay it on a buttered or oiled baking sheet (it will hang over the edges). Put the salmon in the middle. If it has a thinner tail end, tuck it under. Spoon half of the watercress mixture onto the salmon.

Now fold the pastry over into a neat parcel (the join will be at the top, so trim the edge neatly), making sure you don’t have any thick lumps of pastry as these won’t cook through properly. Trim off any excess as you need to. Make 3 neat cuts in the pastry to allow steam to escape and make some decorations with the off-cuts to disguise the join if you like. Brush with the egg glaze.

3. Bake for 30 minutes or until the pastry is crisp and browned. To test wether the salmon is cooked, push a sharp knife through one of the cuts into the flesh, wait for 3 seconds then test it against the inside of your wrist; if it is hot, the salmon is cooked.

Serve with the rest of the watercress puree as a sauce.

saumon croute 010


Shortcrust pastry

450 gr (15.8 ounces or 3.2 cups ) of plain all purpose flour
200 gr ( 7 ounce) cold butter
pinch of salt

Sift the flour into a large bowl, add the butter and rub in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. If you have a food processor you can use that as shown in the above video.
Stir in the salt, then add 2-3 tbsp of water and mix to a firm dough. Knead the dough briefly and gently on a floured surface. Wrap in cling film and chill while preparing the filling.

For best results make sure the butter is very cold.