Home / Essays / 2015 / June / S01E07 The one with the salmon mousse

S01E07 The one with the salmon mousse

Monica cooks a gourmet meal for a restaurateur who is looking for a new chef, however he arrives at the apartment stoned. Meanwhile, Ross tries to master 'dirty talk'.

Now, if that doesn't sound like a great episode, I don't know what does.

[ Scene: Monica's apartment. Everyone is there but Ross and Chandler. Monica is making food, and having everyone try it.]
MONICA: [to Joey] Ok, try this salmon mousse.
JOEY: [tasting] Mmm. Good.
MONICA: Is it better than the other salmon mousse?
JOEY: It's creamier.
MONICA: Yeah, well, is that better?
JOEY: I don't know. We're talking about whipped fish, Monica. I'm just happy I'm keeping it down, y'know?

Salmon and cream cheese and dill, oh my! That's right, no fancy introduction this time. Well, no introduction at all. If you're thinking there's something fishy going on, you're on to something.

CHANDLER: Can you believe it? I mean, don't I look like someone who should be doing something really cool? You know, I just always pictured myself doing... something.
RACHEL: Oh, Chandler, I know, I know... oh,hey! You can see your nipples through this shirt!
MONICA: [brings a plate of tiny appetizers over] Hey, maybe this'll cheer you up. 
CHANDLER: Ooh, you know, I had a grape about five hours ago, so I'd better split this with you.
MONICA: It's supposed to be that small. It's a pre-appetizer. The French call it an amouse-bouche.
CHANDLER: [tastes it] Well, it is amous-ing...

In case you are now as confused as a headless chicken, I will attempt to clarify the situation. Today's recipe is salmon mousse fancy appetizers. I am here to prove that even if fancy is not your thing, this is totally doable. Take it from the person who forgot she didn't have a pipping bag, and tried to manufacture one last-minute. The great adventure of Chuck - the almost pipping bag. His majestic body was made out of a sandwich bag and his nozzle - the top of a tuna can, bent and battered into submission. This is the stuff great legends are made of. Or mediocre tales. Also, by “I tried to manufacture one” I mean I made my boyfriend do it. Why? Because I am a helpless little duckling or a demanding little bitch. Pick your favourite and let's move on.

Things and stuff

A food processor (to process the shit out of that salmon mousse) or some sturdy man muscles, a pipping bag (if you want them to be real purty), baking tray & parchment paper, and your usual bowl, spoon, knife combo.

It was this big

One medium sized bowl, 500 gr. of mousse, aprox. 100 amouse-bouches (that's a lot!, I only made one batch, the rest awaits in my fridge)

It took this long

5 min. to mousse, 10 min. to bread and 10 min. to assemble ( this for one batch-25). So 30 minutes if you take your time.

Ingredients and quantities


The Process

Step 1: Finely chop your salmon / Put your salmon in a food processor and mix until finely chopped. Waaaay easier with the magical tool that plugs in. It's noisy but fast and efficient. I mean, it gets the job done (wink wink).

Step 2: Combine chopped salmon, cream cheese, sour cream and dill. You can thoroughly stir this by hand (if you want a chunkier texture) or process that baby 'till desired mousiness level. I initially went for the “by hand” approach but changed my mind. I want it moussier. 

Tip: don't add salt! The smoked salmon was salty enough. It was actually a tad too much. Next time, I will consider keeping the salmon in water before using it, to get some of the saltiness out. It looked somethin' like this:

Step 3: Now that your mousse is ready, get the bread ready for party. The journey from bread to crostinni is short and safe. Thinly slice your baguette. Tray, parchment paper, place slices.

Step 4: Lightly brush yo' slices with olive oil. You don't have to do this. I just like olive oil on bread. And cheese. Ok, on everything!

Step 5: Put those bad boys in the oven at gas mark 4, aprox. 180 degrees, basically moderate heat. For 5 to 8 minutes. They will be lovely golden brown and crispy as a motherfucker.

Step 6: Yay, assembly time! Get your mousse on the crostinni. If you don't have a pipping bag, to do this “properly”, or if you have a home-made pipping bag, that becomes a hazard after 3 pretty successful crostinnis, go rustique. Use a butter knife or a lil' spoon. 

Step 7: It goes like this: crostinni, mousse, a lil' dollop of sour cream, chopped salmon, chives and or capers.

Even if you think they don't look as fancy “as they should” or whatever amouse-bouche prejudice you have in that head of yours, forget about it. It's fun, it's easy, it's yummy and it can have any personality you want it to have. I wanted mine to be super fancy, very meticulous, very proper, a testimony of patience and precision. I failed. They reflected my true self. And that's a good thing. Food should reflect your true nature. That's what makes it interesting and personal.

Feedback: Slightly too salty. Easy to make. Fun to put together. You can add a lot of things to this. From mustard to horseradish, hard boiled egg yolks, replace the cream cheese with mascarpone or ricotta, top it with dill, capers, finely diced peppers or cucumbers. You can replace the bread with philo pastry, or puffpastry, or crackers, or tiny salad leaves! A lot of wiggle room. This being my first salmon mousse, I chose a basic one. I wanted to feel the intense salmon-ness of it all before I start playing with other flavors. 

There you go, my little mousse-amouse-bouches:

Me gusta la moussolina, dame mas moussolina! 

Mmm... amous-ing ;) Until the next one, bon apetite