I love smoked mackerel pâté and I do buy the ready-made variety from Waitrose or Sainsbury’s if I only need a small amount for my own lunch or a snack. For a party starter or Xmas cold table, however, I always make my own. It’s pretty easy to make if you have a food processor and it tastes so much better. It’s also a darn sight cheaper than buying ready-made – this entire terrine full (about 30cm by 12cm) cost about the same to make as two little supermarket-sized pots! This is a party size portion so just halve the recipe amount for a smaller amount. It’s so delicious, I doubt you’ll have any left anyway. Serve with crackers, rye or sourdough bread. You could also cut up pieces of rye bread into small squares, top with a little of the pâté and decorate with a caper berry, a sliver of cornichon or a sprig of dill and, hey presto, you’ve got delicious and easy canapés for a drinks party.
You will need…
- 6 medium smoked mackerel fillets, skin removed
- 300g full-fat cream cheese
- 2 tablespoons of plain Greek yoghurt
- 1 dessert spoon of creamed horseradish
- The juice of a lemon
- Sea salt, a grating of nutmeg and ground white pepper to season
- 30g butter, melted
- Variation: sometimes I omit the horseradish and add a handful of finely chopped fresh dill.
- Put all of the ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Check for seasoning. Adjust the lemon juice, horseradish, salt and pepper to taste. It should have a sharp, hot kick from the horseradish and lemon to cut the richness of the fish and the cream cheese. If it seems too stiff, add a little more natural yoghurt.
- Put the pâté into a serving dish. Garnish with a sprig of dill and seal with melted butter if you are making this ahead. You can make this the day before serving.
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