Kulebiak z Ryba

A traditional Russian dish, Kulebiak z

Ryba (ku-lee-bee-ak z’rih-bey) is fish and hard-boiled eggs wrapped in crisp, golden pastry. Accompany the pie with a jug of sour cream and serve it with creamed potatoes and spinach for a really impressive dinner party dish.6 oz. flour

1 teaspoon salt

5 oz. butter, cut into small pieces

1 tablespoon vinegar

1 egg yolk

5 to

6 tablespoons iced water

2 lb. cod, haddock or salmon

2 oz. – cup butter

1 onion, halved

1 carrot, scraped celery stalk, trimmed and halved bouquet garni consisting of

4 parsley sprigs,

1 thyme spray and

1 bay leaf tied together

1 fl. oz. water

1 oz. butter, melted

4 hard-boiled eggs, sliced

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley 1 egg, lightly beaten

First prepare the pastry. Sift the flour and salt into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Mix the pieces of butter into the flour, using a knife. Add the vinegar, egg yolk and as much water as is necessary to form the mixture into a firm dough, which should be lumpy.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into an oblong shape. Fold it in three and turn it so that the open edges face you. Roll out again into an oblong shape and proceed as before. Repeat this once again to make three turns in all.

Wrap the dough in greaseproof or waxed paper and put in the refrigerator to chill for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Put the fish, butter, onion, carrot, celery, bouquet garni and water in a medium-sized saucepan. Set the pan over moderate heat and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.

Remove the pan from the heat and carefully lift out. the fish. Discard the liquid and flavourings. Skin and bone the fish and flake it into small pieces.

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 400°F (Gas Mark 6, 200°C).

Remove the dough from the refriger-ator and divide it in half. On a floured surface, roll each piece of dough into a rectangle, about 10-inches by 6-inches. With a sharp knife, trim the edges and reserve the pastry trimmings.

Carefully lift one piece of dough on to a baking sheet. Arrange the fish on the dough leaving a j-inch space around the sides of the dough. Pour the melted butter over the top. Cover with the hard-boiled eggs and sprinkle over the salt, pepper and parsley.

Place the other piece of dough over the fish and eggs. Turn up the edges of the dough to make a shallow rim round the filling. Using your fingers, pinch the rim to seal the edges.

With a sharp knife, cut two slits in the middle of the dough to allow the steam to escape. Roll out the pastry trimmings and use to make a decoration for the top. With a pastry brush, brush the dough with the beaten egg.

Place the pie in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown.

Remove the sheet from the oven and transfer the fish-filled pastry to a warmed serving dish. Serve at once.

Kumquat, a popular fruit in the Far East, mixedwith pineapple and grapes, makes a refreshing hors d’oeuvre.

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