Food and wine go together. And in the spirit of togetherness, we’re supporting our friends and partners in hospitality while their restaurant doors are temporarily closed.

Our OPEN KITCHEN series features recipes, wine pairings and video tutorials from the home kitchens of some of the country’s most exciting chefs.

Until the reservation books are open again, we hope you’ll enjoy these small bites of culinary creativity, here and on Instagram. Do try this at home.

Southernhay House Hotel is a friendly, independently owned hotel in the heart of Exeter city centre. Its beautiful grade II* listed Georgian townhouse was originally home to Major General William Kirkpatrick from 1805-1813, a bohemian character who worked for the East India Company. On your visit, you may spot a nod to this in the rooms, named after trades synonymous with Exeter’s past as a mercantile hub, so expect to stay in Silk, Cotton, Ivory and Spice among others…

Cured Salmon, Your Way

Support your local fishmonger by trying out this simple, delicious recipe for fresh cured salmon, which is a staple on the Southernhay House Hotel menu. It is all about taking the time to craft something special. Get creative in your kitchen and bring your own twist to a classic favourite.

The basics of curing are easy:

  1. Assess the size of your cut of super-fresh salmon (the salt and sugar curing mix has to cover it completely).
  2. Combine 50/50 salt and sugar in a bowl.
  3. The fun stuff: add flavourings (see below for some of Southernhay House Hotel's tested ideas).
  4. Crush any spices - black or red peppercorns, coriander seeds, you name it - in a pestle and mortar first.
  5. You can dry cure the salmon, or add some liquid, from spirits to citrus, the choice is yours! 
  6. Put the salmon in a shallow bowl and cover it with the curing ingredients, rubbing it in with your fingers to cover every side, including the bottom.
  7. Cover with cling film and sit it in the fridge for 1-24 hours. The longer the time, the stronger the taste.
  8. Take out of the fridge and rinse in cold water, pat dry.

To Serve:

Slice thinly as gravadlax, chop as ceviche or grill or bake. If the salmon is to eaten raw, it will need to have cured for a longer period in the cure mix.

Pair with Gusbourne Blanc de Blancs. The fresh, zesty citrus fruit of Blanc de Blancs provides a perfect pairing to the saltiness of cured salmon.

Curing Suggestions from Southernhay House Hotel

We’ve experimented in the past with adding beetroot and crushed caraway seeds, which comes up sweet and spicy and turns the salmon a fabulous shade of purple. We’ve most recently used gin for the rub and charred grapefruit - fresh segments are also fine and cut through the fish nicely. 

A citrus-cured salmon is always a favourite, seasoned then topped with fresh, blanched broad beans and peashoots and drizzled in olive oil and lemon.

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