An old English recipe, Newcastle Potted Salmon is an excellent way to serve salmon. Other fish, such as trout and carp, may be potted in the same way and stored for several days in a cool dry place. Serve the potted salmon with toast and lemon wedges as a first course.
1 lb. fresh salmon
1-2 teaspoons salt
12 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoon ground mace
½ teaspoon ground cloves
5 oz. butter
2 bay leaves
Preheat the oven to moderate 350°F (Gas Mark 4, 180°C). Season the salmon well with halfthe salt and pepper and the mace and cloves. Place the fish in a small casserole and dot it with 1 ounce of the butter, cut into small pieces. Sprinkle the peppercorns over the fish and lay the two bay leaves on top.
Place the casserole in the centre of the oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.
Remove the casserole from the oven. Remove the fish from the casserole and remove and discard the skin and bones. Strain the cooking liquid and reserve. Place the fish in a mortar with 2 ounces of the remaining butter and pound it with a pestle. Add a little of the strained cooking liquid to make the pounding easier. Alternatively, put the fish, butter and cooking liquid in an electric blender and blend until smooth. Mix in the remaining salt and pepper.
When the fish has been thoroughly pounded, pack it into three 4-ouncc pots, leaving a J-inch space at the top. Set aside to cool.
In a small saucepan melt the remaining butter over low heat. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool for 5 minutes.
Pour one-third of the melted butter into each pot. Cover the pots with aluminium foil and put them in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours.
Remove the pots from the refrigerator and serve immediately.