This dish suddenly seems to be on every London restaurant menu at the moment (it's having a roe-surgence, if you will) and I couldn't be happier about. Rich, smokey, salty - it's got it all going on. It makes regular appearances on our canapé menu too, as we've found that a dollop on a rye cracker with a blob of crème fraîche and a sprinkle of dill is possibly one of the finest mouthfuls you could ask for. The most exciting part of this all, however, is that it's so easy to make, a five year-old could do it. You'll need to go to a fishmonger to buy the roes and unfortunately/fortunately you usually have to buy the entire roe, but panic not, just chuck what you don't need in the freezer - they love it in there and de-frost extraordinarily quickly. My recipe doesn't go down the typical taramsalata route of adding bread as I find it slightly takes away from the the fishy kick, but it's a good way of bulking it out if you need to make large quantities.
Makes one big bowl
300g smoked cod's roe
A big squeeze of lemon juice
150ml extra-virgin olive oil
3 tbsp crème fraîche
Peel away the skin from the roe or if this is tricky, use a spoon to scoop out the roe. Transfer to a food processor or blender (or use a fork if you're happy with a slightly rougher texture).
Squeeze in the lemon juice, blitz briefly and with the motor running, slowly start pouring in the oil, drop by drop as if you're making a mayonnaise. As soon as you've used half the oil, you can start adding it in a steady stream. Once it's all been incorporated, add the crème fraîche, whizz again and add a little more lemon if you feel it needs it. Transfer to a bowl and serve immediately with rye crackers, radishes or my favourite, salty crisps. Will keep beautifully in the fridge for 5 days.