Potted Salmon

This image courtesy of Noel Murphy

Potting in butter would have been Mrs Patmore’s way of using up scraps of fish – kippers and shrimps can be given the same treatment. Serve as a starter, supper dish or as part of a picnic.


Total Timeunder 4 hours

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

One Pot MealYes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Family Get-together

Recipe Courseappetizer, main course

Dietary Considerationegg-free, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Mealdinner, lunch

Taste and Texturebuttery, herby, rich

Type of Dishdip/spread


  • 1 stick plus 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1 blade of mace
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 lb poached salmon or leftover cooked salmon
  • A pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • A pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped dill
  • Zest and juice of ½ lemon
  • Salt and black pepper


  1. Place the butter, mace and bay leaf in a small pan over a medium heat and gently heat until the butter starts to bubble. Remove from the heat, cover and leave to one side for about 30 minutes to infuse.

  2. Meanwhile, flake the salmon into a mixing bowl, discarding any skin and bones. Add the grated nutmeg, cayenne, dill, lemon juice and zest, and season generously with salt and pepper. Pour in a splash of the butter and mix well to combine. Divide the salmon mixture between six ramekins or small pots, pressing it down until flat.

  3. Pour the rest of the melted butter through a sieve into a jug, leaving the milky liquid (solids) behind in the pan. Pour the clarified butter over the salmon in the ramekins. Cover the ramekins and chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour. Eat within 3-4 days. Take out of the fridge 15 minutes before serving.

  4. Serve the potted salmon with hot, thin toast and lemon wedges.


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