James Street Recipes: Niall McKenna’s Smoked Mackerel Pate and Quick Carbonara
On the rare days of the year when we are lucky enough to have blue skies and temperatures above 20°C, we tend to prefer quick and easy dishes that require minimal effort and preparation time.
The first of this week’s recipes is smoked mackerel pâté. With no cooking required, just add the ingredients to a blender and blitz.
When served with fresh bread, salad and a lemon wedge, this dish is ideal for summer picnics, quick lunches or as an appetizer for a dinner party.
The second recipe, a quick carbonara, is made using simple ingredients to create a rich, creamy sauce and topped with crispy bacon for added texture.
This crowd-pleasing pasta recipe is perfect for a quick mid-week dinner to feed the whole family.
For more information or to book a Waterman Cookery School experience, go to cookinbelfast.co.uk.
SMOKED MACKEREL PATE
(For 6 persons)
500 g smoked mackerel, skinless and deboned
25g anchovies in brine, chopped
100g fresh cream
35 g creamed horseradish
Freshly ground black pepper
Place the mackerel, anchovies and horseradish in a blender and mix. The mixture should still have some texture.
Open lid and add crème fraîche, freshly ground pepper and pulse until combined.
Remove from blender, place in ramekins and refrigerate pie to cool.
Serve with marinated vegetables or a small green salad. I prefer to serve mine with baby lettuce, radish slices and capers, dressed in olive oil.
Always serve on toasted sourdough bread or on a French baguette with a wedge of lemon.
1 tsp olive oil
200 g smoked bacon, diced
150 g soft cream cheese
150 ml liquid cream
50 g grated parmesan
Fry the bacon in a dry skillet until crisp, draining the fat.
In another bowl, whisk together cream cheese, cream and Parmesan until well blended.
Cook pasta in hot water with salt until al dente. Drain the pasta and stir it into the cream mixture until the pasta is well coated.
Add the bacon and if necessary a spoonful of cooking water to thicken.
When ready to serve, add more Parmesan to taste.