Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Cosmopolitan herring

In addition to the neighbour with the avocado tree our neighbourhood in Spain consists of Concert Pianist, Noisy Finnish Family, The Old Man and the NHL Ice Hockey Player. The avocado tree's got nothing on the last neighbour - he, you see,  has sauna

In the four years he lived in Finland The Gentleman didn't learnt the language or love of salty liquorice, but sauna - that he loves. Another thing he warmed to in Finland is raw fish. Both gravad and pickled varieties. Especially the winners of the Baltic Herring Fair a couple of years ago: the lemon and black currant herrings.

So, let the preserving frenzy and herring mania continue! This time the inspiration came from Sex and The City, which for a number of reasons has always been particularly close to my heart. Shoe shopping, dreams of a career as a writer and the older, commitment phobic man are clearly not what I'm referring to. Right?

The herring I prepared by cooking them first in vinegar solution the way I did with boquerones and then marinated them. Initially the plan was to make cranberry herring, but after discovering the remains of Cointreau and a couple of limes in my fridge I got Carried away (Carrie, the Sex and The City character, geddit?). And for a reason, too. These were so good they might just as well have come from the Herring Fair! You could make this without Cointreau too, but in that case you'd probably need to add sugar. Or orange slices. In any case Cointreau is the kind of alcohol that has many uses in the kitchen. Like Limoncello, it just lifts those citrusy notes to a whole new level - just try that Limoncello pasta!

If you can't get herring, you could make these with European cisco, too. Wouldn't that be truly cosmopolitan - Lapland meets New York...

400 g herring fillets

Vinegar solution:

5 dl cold water
1.25 dl strong vinegar (10%)
1 generous tbsp salt

Rinse the fillets and pat dry. If you want, you can remove the skin too. Mix the ingredients for the solution and pour over the fish. Keep covered and let cook in the cold until the next day. 


1 dl good cranberry jelly
0,3 dl red wine vinegar
1 lime
5 allspice peppers
1 kaffir lime leaf (can be omitted or substituted with a small bay leaf))
1 small red onion
2 tsp salt
5 cl Cointreau or Triple Sec
0,5 dl water

Mix the ingredients. Slice the lime and red onion thinly. Drain the herring and place in an air tight container in layers with onion and lime. Pour the marinade on top and let it marinate for at least a couple of days before serving.




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