I first encountered coulibiac when my Granny served one up for a big family lunch one Sunday, many moons ago. It was a puff pastry masterpiece filled with a whole side of salmon, and brimming with rice, eggs and dill smothered vegetables.
I remember the ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ as it was placed on the table, in all it’s golden buttery splendour, an exotic triumph a far cry away from the traditional English roast beef and Yorkshire puddings.
Coulibiac now frequently makes its way onto our dinner table in one form or another, with variations on the fish and vegetables. It’s a perfect vehicle for using up leftover meat, fish and vegetables and makes a great dinner party centrepiece if you’re feeding lots of people on a tight budget.
See this dish as part of a MEAL PLAN
Prep time: 1 hour
Makes: 4 servings
2 sheets puff pastry
2 cups cavolo nero/kale
1 cup smoked trout (minimum)
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup rice
2 boiled eggs
handful chopped parsley
2 heaped tsp dried dill
Thaw two sheets of puff pastry.
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius and place a flat metal baking tray on the top shelf.
Cook 1/4 cup of rice in 1/2 cup salted boiling water. Lid on. Low heat for about 10 minutes or until rice is fluffy and water absorbed.
Meanwhile in a frying pan heat a little olive oil over a medium heat. Fry together the roughly chopped cavolo nero, onion and the finely chopped garlic until soft and starting to colour. Add in the cooked rice, parsley and dill and combine well. Taste and season. Transfer to a clean bowl and allow to cool.
Take one sheet of puff pastry and layer on flakes of smoked trout, leaving about half an inch of pastry around the perimeter. Next, heap over spoonfuls of the cooled rice mixture followed by slices of boiled egg.
Place the second sheet of puff pastry on top and seal along the edges with a little warm water, crimping together the edges as you go. Fold up the crimped edges inwards to create a smooth outer line, spray the top with olive oil and place on the hot baking tray. Cook in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until the pastry is crisp and golden.
This is traditionally made with salmon instead of trout
A little lemon zest
Whip together horseradish and sour cream and dollop over the coulibiac
Herb salad of parsley, dill, green beans and peas.