Salmon rillettes

Salmon rillettes

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(2 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 5 mins Plus cooling time

Skill level

Moderately easy


Serves 8

A little like a salmon terrine, this dish is terrific with homemade bread, served as a starter

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition info


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  • 500g skinless salmon fillets
  • 200g pack Philadelphia cheese
  • 1 zest of 1 lemon, and juice of ½ lemon
  • 8 slices smoked salmon (approx 300g/11oz pack)
  • 50g pot keta (salmon caviar), to serve
  • dressed salad leaves, dill sprigs, lemon wedges and soda bread (below) to serve

For the poaching liquid

  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • few black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 shallot or ½ an onion, sliced
  • stems from a small bunch of dill (keep the feathery leaves if you make the soda bread)

For the dressing

  • 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 5 tbsp crème fraîche

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  1. Put the salmon and poaching ingredients into a pan and just cover with cold water. Bring to a gentle boil, then turn down and poach for 4 mins. set aside, off the heat, for 5 mins to carry on cooking. lift out the salmon and break into large flakes with a fork. Allow to cool.
  2. Whizz the cheese in a processor, then add the poached salmon and pulse until blended. if you don't have a processor, mash the fish with a fork and stir into the softened cheese. Add the lemon zest, juice and season to taste (if using a processor, do this with a spoon so that the mix doesn't get overworked).
  3. Take two dessertspoons, wet with water, then scoop up a generous spoonful of the salmon mix with one. now bring the second spoon over and under the mix, transferring it from one spoon to the other, turning it over as you go. Do this several times until you have an even, egg-shaped portion. Repeat with the rest of the mix, putting them on a plate when done. Cover lightly with cling film. Chill for at least 2 hrs and up to 2 days ahead. Meanwhile, mix the mustard and crème fraîche with seasoning to make a dressing and make the soda bread, see link, right.
  4. To serve, lay a slice of smoked salmon on 8 plates and top with the rillettes. Spoon the dressing on the side and top with ½ tsp keta and a sprig of dill. Serve with the toasted bread, lemon wedges and dressed salad leaves.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, October 2006

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dansupercook's picture
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Made it yesterday as a starter for Christmas Eve had everything ready the night before so it was just an assembly job. Great recipe with a wow effect! Did not manage to find salmon caviar but was good anyway.

alethea000's picture

Can we have the original recipe back? It was great! It´s vanished from my binder too! I´m sure this is lovely but the original one I know works beautifully!

jocgriffin's picture

I made this for a starter on xmas day. Made it the day before and kept it in a container until xmas morning then attempted to shape the rillettes. The shape wasn't perfect but it didn't matter...served it with smoked salmon and prawns, a rocket garnish and the dressing and some fresh bread from the supermarket. It went down very well and I had lots of good comments.

alemap's picture

Where has the original recipe gone? It has vanished from my binder as well. It was great.

AndiR's picture
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Fairly easy. Looks great on plate

onetwin's picture

Hi I made this to raise money for children in need i didnt change the ingredients but i multiplied it by six! I served it on a variety of different breads and crackers including rosemary and chees thin crackers, every one loved it and will be serving it over the christmas period, we managed to raise �75.00 for Children in Need thanks a lot Felicity

onetwin's picture

Hi, I made this recipe times 6 for Children in Need and sold it at work at Carewatch East Herts. I served it with brown toast and marks and spencer rosemary crackers, it sold brilliantly, and we managed to raise 75pounds. They have asked for it again at our Christmas Buffet. I also teach food safety to adults and children and will be using this as an example of a high risk food and how to cook it and prepare it and serve it safely! many thanks for that Felicity