Today my column is all about the famous Arbroath Smokie and it’s amazing unique flavour and new ways of enjoying them, but where did this amazing flavour hail fae? Does anybody really know?
There are several theories put forward as to the true origin of our famous Arbroath Smokie.
The story I favour relates to a cottage in Auchmithie in which haddocks were hanging up to be dried for preservation purposes. Unfortunately, a fire broke out and burned the house to the ground. It was then (reputedly), whilst sifting through the ashes, wood, dust and associated debris that the ‘smokies’ were discovered.
These delightful local delicacies are delicious served simply with some butter and a poached egg.
However, they are also amazing when turned into something a little different like my Arbroath Smokie Savoury Cheesecake which I am about to share with you.
If you’re not familiar with this combination of flavours, you’re probably thinking “Adam, where are going with this?” As I explained to one of my friends the other day – try not to think of it as a cheesecake, more of a seafood starter. She too seemed bemused by the prospect to begin with but was convinced in the end once she actually tried it. In fact, she insisted on taking another portion home with her.
Arbroath Smokie Savoury Cheesecake
For the cheesecake base:
120g of oat cakes bashed into a fine crumb
50g of melted butter
Pinch of cracked black pepper
Simply mix it all together and pack it into a cake tin or your preferred mould.
For the Smokie mix:
1 pair of Arbroath Smokies
250 ml cream
250g cream cheese
1tbs horseradish sauce
1 leaf of gelatine pre-soaked to soften
Firstly, open up the Smokies and pick all of the meat out (make sure there’s no bones)
Keep the Smokie skins and put them in a pan then simmer them in a pot with the cream.
Pull this off the heat and leave to infuse for 15 mins. Then strain the mix through a sieve and preserve the liquid.
Melt the gelatine into the hot cream.
Mix the Smokie cream, horseradish, cream cheese, and about a third of the smokie meat then mix and beat well. Then pour the mix over the oatcake base and set in the fridge. Once it has set, decorate the top of the cheesecake generously with the remaining Smokie meat.
This dish is served perfectly with a wedge of lemon and simple salad or for a more ‘cheffy’ approach avocado purée, whipped wasabi cream and a pot of posh Caviar!