All the flavors in this dish — smokiness of the salmon, saltiness of the capers, tangy goat cheese, creamy hard-boiled egg and sharp red onion — work wonders together.
By Laura Davidson
Meat and potatoes is a common stereotype when it comes to Finnish (or Nordic) cuisine. I’m the first to admit that this was my initial perception. But there is a lot of truth and history to that as well. Due to the climate and difficulty with crop cultivation, vegetables and certain grains (specifically wheat) have not always played a huge part in the country’s mainstay diet.
Instead, the diet consisted mainly of other cereals and grains, specifically rye, game meats, potatoes, as well as cheese and other dairy. And a whole lot of fish. Specifically, smoked salmon.
My immediate conclusion? Make a dish with smoked salmon and potatoes, which to be honest, was my initial thought when I first heard about this project to begin with.
In the end, I came up with the idea of a open-faced smoked salmon potato tartine. Traditionally, tartines are made with bread, but in this case, I decided to make the base with potatoes (also known as a potato darphin).
The base is simply grated potato (seasoned with salt and pepper) and cooked until thin and crispy in a non-stick skillet. Once this is cool, you simply top this with herbed goat cheese, thin slices of smoked salmon, and garnish with red onion, salty capers, and finely chopped hard-boiled egg.
All of the flavors work so well together! The smokiness of the smoked salmon, saltiness of the capers, tangy goat cheese, creamy hard-boiled egg and sharp red onion. You will love everything about it.
While the following recipe makes one large tartine (to serve one or two), feel free to double or triple the recipe if you desire. It would also work perfectly as party finger food too. This is definitely one of my favorite dishes to date!
- 1 large russet potato, peeled and grated lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons clarified butter (or other neutral flavored oil)
- 4 ounces soft goat cheese, at room temperature
- 1½ tablespoons finely minced chives
- ½ garlic clove, finely minced
- zest of half a lemon
- thinly sliced smoked salmon
- 2 tablespoons drained capers
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
- ½ hard boiled egg, finely chopped
- finely minced chives (for garnish)
- Assembly all of the toppings:
- Combine goat cheese, lemon zest, and garlic in small bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Gently stir in fresh chives. Set aside.
- Season the chopped red onion and hard-boiled egg with salt.
- Prepare the Potato Cake:
- Working quickly (as the potato will quickly begin to oxidize), grate the potato (lengthwise) into using the large holes of a grater. Squeeze the potatoes to remove some of the excess liquid. Season generously with salt and pepper and toss.
- Heat clarified butter in a 8-10 inch non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the grated potato and shape roughly into a large circle.
- Press on the mixture with the back of a spoon to compact it, cover and cook gently for 8-10 minutes or until the bottom is golden brown.
- Flip carefully to other side and cook for another 8-10 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.
- Remove to cooling rack and allow to cool until barely lukewarm or room temperature.
- Assemble the Tartine:
- Once potato cake has cooled, spread the goat cheese mixture on the top. Layer the smoked salmon directly over this and sprinkle with the red onion, hard-boiled egg, and capers. Garnish with freshly chopped chives.
- Cut into wedges and serve immediately.
After deciding to take a leap of faith, Laura enrolled in culinary school to pursue her passion for all things food. On her blog, Blogging Over Thyme, she shares her experience as a culinary student, her favorite recipes, stories, and photography!