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Salmon tartare

If you lack the time to cure some salmon to precede your stew, you can always drop a big dime on some smoked salmon or prepare this simple tartare.

Feeding Fish

serves 6

There is nothing particularly British per se about uncooked fish; raw like cured salmon appears in most northern maritime cuisines. This simple treatment, however, combines classically British elements including citrus zest, malt vinegar and marjoram to make a characteristically bright and simple starter.

-about 1 lb salmon coarsely chopped into irregular ¼ inch bits
-2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
-1 heaped teaspoon lemon zest
-½ teaspoon malt vinegar
-1 teaspoon lemon juice
-½ cup minced shallots
-2 Tablespoons minced chives
-2 Tablespoons minced fresh marjoram or summer savory or a combination of them
-salt and pepper to taste
-cayenne or hot sauce to taste

  1. Dump everything together and gently turn to combine the ingredients.
  2. Chill the tartare for at least four hours, optimally more, before serving with toast.


-Olive oil is not as inauthentic as you might think; it has been imported to Britain for at least four and a half centuries.

-You may need up to a teaspoon of salt.

-If you want less bite, substitute more lemon juice for the malt vinegar. We like the bite; salmon is assertive.

-If you do not have chives, use the green tops of scallions; the flavor is a little less delicate but no less appealing.

-Parsley is a viable if less aromatic substitute for the herbs.

-Old School British people butter the toast.