Recipe: Lesley Waters' gin & lemon marinated smoked salmon with beetroot hash

Gin & lemon marinated smoked salmon with beetroot hash

Gin & lemon marinated smoked salmon with beetroot hash - Credit: timmacpherson.com

I love gin, especially Fordingtons, made here in Dorset, and I adore beetroot and garlic! All come together is this easy starter. I believe in simplicity when it comes to food, and this dish is ideal for a balmy summers evening. The beetroot hash accompaniment is a real treat if you grow your own beetroot, a world away from my childhood memories of a Sunday salad at Grans with a dish of beetroot heavily laced with malt vinegar! This simple way of serving it is colourful, sophisticated and nutritious and gives it new universal appeal. Beetroots are incredibly versatile, boil, bake or stir-fry, serve hot or cold, and use in sweet or savoury dishes. I love it roasted with my Sunday dinner - peel and cut into wedges, toss with olive oil, season and roast at 200°C / Gas 6 for 45 mins - 1 hour until tender. Or peel and coarsely grate 1lb beetroot then stir-fry in butter in a hot pan for 2 minutes. Season and finish with lemon juice and zest then serve with a dollop of sour cream and smoked trout or salmon. However, my favourite beetroot dish is simply grated and dressed (see below). It really doesn’t get any simpler than that. Enjoy! 

Gin & lemon marinated smoked salmon with beetroot hash and black garlic croûtes 

Swap the black garlic croûtes for crusty granary bread and butter if you prefer.  

Gin and lemon marinated smoked salmon, a lovely summer starter 

Gin and lemon marinated smoked salmon, a lovely summer starter - Credit: timmacpherson.com

Serves 4 as a starter      

200g smoked salmon 

3-4 tablespoons Fordington Gin 

2 tablespoons chopped dill 

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2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 

juice of half lemon  

1 piece lemon peel 

1 shallot finely chopped  

freshly ground black pepper 


Method: Lay the smoked salmon over a large serving platter. In a Kilner jar or jam jar, shake together the gin, dill, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon peel, shallot and black pepper. Spoon the mixture over the salmon and leave for 20 - 30 minutes. In the meantime make the beetroot hash and black garlic croûtes. 

Beetroots are incredibly versatile, boil, bake or stir-fry, serve hot or cold, use in sweet or savoury dishes

Beetroots are incredibly versatile, boil, bake or stir-fry, serve hot or cold, and use in sweet or savoury dishes - Credit: vitalssss/Getty Images/iStockphoto

For the beetroot hash 

500g raw beetroot, peeled  

1 large red onion, peeled and finely sliced 

4tbsp rapeseed oil 

2-3tbsp good quality balsamic vinegar or to taste 

2 tablespoons sour cream or crème fraîche   

3 tsp of horseradish cream   

Method: Coarsely shred the peeled beetroot using a food processor or the coarse part of a hand grater. Toss together the shredded beetroot, onion, oil and balsamic vinegar, season well with sea salt and black pepper. Mix  with the sour cream and horseradish, season to taste.  

For the black garlic croûtes 

Makes 6 medium croûtes (or 20 small for canapés) 
55g salted butter melted 

1 ½ tsp black garlic sugar  

1 small sourdough loaf, sliced thickly into 6 to 8 croûtes 

Method: Preheat oven to 200°C/ gas mark 6. In a small pan heat the butter and sugar together gently until the sugar has dissolved. Dip the bread croûtes in the butter briefly including the edges. Place the croûtes on a baking tray and bake for approx. 10 minutes until golden and crisp. 

Click here for our vegan watercress and hazelnut pesto recipe 

Lesley Waters heads up the WhitePepper Online course Cooking with Friends 

Lesley Waters heads up the WhitePepper Online course Cooking with Friends - Credit: timmacpherson.com

Lesley Waters is well-known for her cookery books and television appearances on Ready Steady Cook (BBC), Great Food Live (UKTV), This Morning and James Martin Saturday Morning (ITV). Famed for her engaging style, this former Head Tutor at Leith’s School of Food & Wine has teamed up with WhitePepper for her first online cookery course: Cooking for Friends where she shares sensational fail-proof, flavour-packed recipes to make at home. So, let me hand over to Lesley to share one with you right now. Book the course at whitepepper.online

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