In response to some polite (and not so polite) requests for NON-MEAT options at Popstrami, we’ve put a couple new dishes on the menu for Sunday’s Popstrami.
Salmon pastrami filled bialy, with cream cheese, capers and red onion.
Smoked shiitake Reuben “Wise Sons”, with sauerkraut, Swiss cheese and Russian dressing.
I had to call the last dish “Wise Sons” because it was so wholesale ripped off from the Wise Sons Deli – thanks Leo & Evan (and sorry). I’m smoking the shiitakes myself and then will marinate them in soy sauce and mirin. OK, it’s not exactly kosher but you’d have to be meshuga to not eat brisket.
A bialy is just a low-rent bagel, in case you were wondering. Stuffed with poppy seeds and onions they are very delicious.
So, salmon pastrami, what the hell is that? It’s basically smoked salmon with a pastrami crust. But not any smoked salmon, a home-cured, home-smoked creation of my own.
The salmon is from Loch Fyne Oysters, who in turn get theirs from Wester Ross (they also use Loch Duart), an independent producer in Scotland. This is RSPCA Freedom Food-approved salmon so you don’t have to feel too guilty about it. They will post you a whole salmon and it will arrive in a cool box the next day. I did try and get some from Birmingham wholesale market but all that was available was Norweigan stuff. One trader when asked about Loch Duart fish said “that organic stuff tastes like f**king rubber”. But he’s clearly an idiot.
My reward for being slightly inept at filleting is to eat the offcuts sashimi style, beautifully fresh and tasting just of the sea (or Loch, or whatever).
I digress – salmon gets an overnight cure in a sea salt and molasses sugar cure (around 70:30 ratio).
Tomorrow it will get a pastrami-style crust (black pepper and coriander) and the cold-smoking of its little life.
See you Sunday yeah? It’s going to be busy.