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This is our first test from Laduree Savory: The Recipes. It has blinis for Suzen and smoked salmon for Suzen — and for me. The results here almost cannot be described. Suzen made these blinis thick yet soft. The smoked salmon is, in fact, alder-smoked salmon.

Where do you get alder-smoked salmon? A gourmet market. Or, if you have a daughter who lives in Seattle two blocks from a smokehouse, … More on that option later in the week. And, the blinis pictured here are topped, not with the usual sour cream or crème fraîche, but with homemade mayonnaise, fresh, lemony and oh so different from that stuff in the jar. That recipe is coming later this week as well.

Back to the blinis. You can serve these as an appetizer, or for brunch, or do what we did: serve them with champagne for dinner with a very simple lettuce salad: oil and lemon juice on greens right from the famers market. The combination is richly satisfying.

One note, this is not a do-it-right-now recipe. The blini batter needs to mellow in your fridge for 12 hours after yeasting for 2 hours on your kitchen counter. Really good things sometimes need really extensive planning.

Oh, about the cat in the picture. That is Gina and she is the official Cooking by the Book Smoked Salmon Testing Cat. You have to know Gina well to interpret the purrs, ear moves, and dashes of her tail. I can translate for you though: our alder-smoked salmon from Seattle passed all tests. And Gina, being very thorough, insisted on multiple tests.


Blini with Alder-Smoked Salmon

Yield: 6 servings


  • ¾ cup milk
  • ¼ teaspoon slightly rounded active dry yeast
  • 2 eggs yolks
  • 2 egg whites
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 10 ounces smoke salmon for garnish
  • Mayonnaise, sour cream, or crème fraîche for garnish
  • 1 lemon


Prepare the blinis by first pouring the milk into a bowl. Add the yeast and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside for 2 hours at room temperature to allow the yeast to rest.

Beat the egg yolks with the yeasted milk and incorporate the shifted flour little by little, until the mixture is smooth. Cover and allow to rest in the refrigerator for 12 hours.

Whisk the egg white with the salt until smooth, shiny and stiff peaks form. Removed the egg yolk mixture from the refrigerator and gently fold in the egg whites until the mixture is light and airy.

Melt the butt in a blini pan. Pour it into a small bowl for use when cooking the blinis. Brush the pan with a little melted butter and place over medium heat. Put several spoonfuls of batter into the pan and cook on both sides for a few seconds. Transfer the cooked blinis to a plate using a spatula, cover and keep warm. Repeat until all the batter has been used.

To serve, cut the smoked salmon in squares the same size as the blinis.

Place the warm blinis on small plates, top with the smoked salmon and small spoonful of the mayo, sour cream, crème fraîche. Sprinkle with a couple of drops of lemon juice.


Sources: Laduree Savory: The Recipes