Shalom and chag sameach smoked fish fans! It’s almost time for Hanukkah, and we have five smoked fish recipes to light up the night this year during the Festival of Lights. We had so much fun designing our Thanksgiving recipes that it wasn’t hard to find a few more folks here at Acme Smoked Fish that wanted to get in on the action designing and sharing recipes for Hanukkah. We got to work in the Acme test kitchen cooking, testing, and tasting recipes – sometimes testing and tasting a few times – and came up with these five recipes that are sure to impress friends and family alike. Without further ado, here are the smoked fish recipes we came up with. We hope they add a little extra fun and deliciousness to your Hanukkah celebrations!
As fried foods are often the theme during Hanukkah, latkes represent a classic. Already an Acme Smoked Fish Hanukkah favorite, the addition of smoked salmon, crème fraiche, red onion, and capers make this Hanukkah dish feel like the holiday on a plate. You can top this take on a traditional treat with any variety of smoked salmon or mix and match flavors to make it as festive as you’d like!
When it comes to kugel, the different variations sort of form a four-way flavor/ingredient matrix. You have savory-sweet spanning one axis, and you have noodle-potato along the other axis. Everyone has their favorite, but at Acme Smoked Fish we love all kugels! That said, we figured that the best type of kugel for showcasing smoked fish would be the savory/noodle variety. Once this was decided, we thought, “What smoked fish would work best in this type of kugel?” After testing a few varieties of smoked fish in various savory noodle kugel recipes, we decided that Nova smoked salmon would be the best fit. The conclusion proved true. Salty and delicate, yet firm and succulent, cold smoked salmon held up best in terms of flavor and texture as a component of a classic hearty dish like noodle kugel.
To go with your fried latkes and hearty kugel, we decided to whip together something light, easy, and refreshing. You can use any greens you’d like, but we suggest a healthy amount of arugula mixed with various Fall season lettuces and kale. If you are making this salad well ahead of time, we suggest using mostly arugula and baby kale. This is because the semi-firm leaves are less likely to wilt under refrigeration. Not to mention the small leaf size is less likely to need chopping. If you are preparing the salad immediately before serving, you can consider adding a greater variety of leafy vegetables like butterhead, Boston, bibb, or for a more chopped salad feel you could use chopped iceberg, butterhead, or romaine. This dish is so versatile it’s really the dealer’s choice! For the hot smoked salmon component, we suggest our honey maple hot smoked salmon, but any hot smoked salmon will work deliciously in this dish. A garnish of parmesan or pecorino-romano is optional but encouraged!
We had some leftover potatoes after making latkes earlier in the day, and everyone was thinking the same thing, “What are we going to do with the rest of these potatoes?” For a lot of us at Acme Smoked Fish, potatoes and herring are a popular flavor combination, so we didn’t have to think very long about what we were going to make. What’s great about this crispy potato recipe is that you can prepare it either baked or fried. If you already have some hot oil sizzling in a pan from preparing your latkes, we suggest using it to fry the potatoes in this recipe. If not, they are just as delicious cooked in the oven. Topped with pickled herring and fresh dill, this dish makes for a sumptuous bite of varied flavors and textures. Warm and crispy potatoes, smooth and sweet pickled herring, and herbal and aromatic dill all come together in a way that just works.
After a big day of cooking and tasting, we decided to close out our day of recipe development with a quick, easy, and light recipe. For this one we took three simple, undemanding ingredients and – if we can say so – created something greater than the sum of its parts. Lightly marinated cantaloupe, delicate and smoky smoked salmon, and creamy goat cheese combine in each bite to form a flavor that sings mellifluously. This appetizer or snack recipe almost feels like cheating, it’s so easy, but quite often steals the show.
Once again, we had a blast working on some fun recipes for Hanukkah, using old and new culinary inspirations alike. Of course, you can mix and match these recipes over the course of the eight days of Hanukkah to your heart’s content, but you might have noticed that there are only five recipes here. If after reading this you feel inspired to try a different smoked fish recipe every night of the eight days of Hanukkah, please let us know what you came up with! Happy Hanukkah everyone, from our family to yours.