Dakota Hotel’s Head Chef Craig Rogan shares his ultimate Christmas starter recipe with us.
For the Oak Smoked Salmon
3-4 slices of Oak Smoked Salmon
For the Pickled Beetroot Red Heritage Beetroot
100ml white wine vinegar
For the Salt Baked Beetroots
1 Red Heritage Beetroot
1 Golden Heritage Beetroot
1 Candy Heritage Beetroot
For the Beetroot Syrup
1 litre Beetroot Juice
For the Walnut Emulsion
500ml Walnut Oil
4 Boiled Eggs (*5 minutes from Boiling)
1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
For the Toasted Walnuts
50g Walnut Halves
10ml Walnut Oil
For The Beetroot Crisps
1 Red Heritage Beetroot
Red Vein Sorrel Cress
Firstly, the day before, make the Pickled Beetroot. Start by making the pickling liquid. Place the white wine vinegar and sugar into a pan and place onto the stove. When all sugar is dissolved remove from the heat and add the water. Place into the fridge to cool. Thinly slice the beetroot, and using a ring cutter, cut into small circles. When pickle liquid is cool, place the beetroot inside and submerge. Leave for at least 12 hours before using.
For the Roasted Beetroots – Set Oven to 200’c. Place all beetroots onto a tray and season well. Roast for approx. 45 mins. Some may take longer depending on your oven.
For the Beetroot Syrup, put beetroot juice and sugar into a pan and place onto stove, reduce to syrup consistency. (It must be a medium heat – If too high the juice will burn) when finished place into fridge to cool. When cool, put into a plastic squeezy bottle.
For the Walnut Emulsion – Place eggs and mustard into a blender and blitz to a smooth consistency. Slowly add the walnut oil to make a smooth white emulsion (if done too fast the mix will split) Season with salt. Put the mixture into a piping bag.
For the Toasted Walnuts – place walnuts onto an oven tray and dress with the walnut oil and salt. Place into the oven and lightly roast. This should take around 10 minutes but keep an eye on them – a light golden colour is desired. Crush and place into a tub for later.
For the Beetroot Crisps – Thinly slice the beetroot and lightly fry at around 150’c. Then place onto a tray lined with cloth to remove excess oil. Season lightly with salt.
Coming back to the Beetroots, when cooked, carefully remove from the oven and gently peel the skin from the beetroots. When peeled, cut into 3-4 cm dice and chill.
To plate the dish – lay 3-4 slices of oak smoked salmon onto the plate. Drizzle the beetroot syrup over the salmon and around the plate. Then, place neat dots of walnut emulsion on top of the salmon and around the plate. Arrange the diced beetroots on top of the salmon and place the beetroot crisps on top. Sprinkle over the crushed walnuts and drizzle the walnut oil around the dish. To finish garnish with the red vein sorrel leaves.