Spaghetti With Salmon Two Ways
To dress pasta? Olive oil, of course. But that was until I tried a generously buttered spaghetti at Arakataka restaurant in Oslo. Only after I unwound the disarmingly simple knot of fresh pasta strands tossed with butter and crowned with fish roe did the sumptuous complexity of flavors start to bloom. This was a dish I knew I would try to replicate at home. The challenge was the roe. The restaurant used lojrom, also called bleak roe, a fairly fine-grained roe that is popular in Scandinavia but hard to find in the United States. Other roes, like golden whitefish, trout and salmon, may be substituted. For a somewhat more substantial preparation, I added some hot-smoked salmon, ripe tomato and a hint of lemon.
- Serves: 2 persons
- 2 ½tablespoons unsalted butter
- Grated zest of 1 lemon
- 1medium-large ripe beefsteak tomato, peeled, seeded and diced (about 1 cup)
- 4ounces hot-smoked salmon, skinned, diced
- 1 ½tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint leaves
- 8ounces spaghetti alla chitarra, preferably fresh
- Ground black pepper
- 3tablespoons salmon or trout roe
Step 1Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta. While water is heating, melt butter in a 3-quart saucepan over low heat. Add lemon zest to butter and cook about 90 seconds, until the lemon is fragrant. Do not allow butter to brown. Remove from heat. Add tomato and salmon to the pan and stir briefly. Fold in mint.
Step 2When water boils, add pasta and cook until al dente, about 5 minutes. Drain, then place pasta in the pot with the salmon and gently fold ingredients together. Season generously with pepper and, if needed, salt.
Step 3Divide pasta among 2 or 3 shallow plates. Top each portion with roe and serve.