We already had a practice run for Christmas. Petra brought a beautiful bottle of vodka from Berlin en Tal thought of these blinis to go with it. Of course, a perfect combination but also without the vodka these blinis are a showstopper. This recipe is also featured in this month’s issue of the Dutch culinary magazine Elle Eten. Have yourself a lovely Christmas!
Appetizer or starter, 25-30 blinis
Action Time: 35-40 minutes + 1 hour resting
2.6 oz/75 g buckwheat flour
3.5 oz/100 g all-purpose flour
10 fl oz/300 ml buttermilk
1 tsp/7 g active dry yeast
clarified butter or olive oil, for baking
For the beet puree:
7 oz/200 g red beets, roasted (see tip below)
7 oz/200 g sour cream
1½ tbsp horseradish
For the topping:
3.5 oz/100 g smoked salmon, into pieces
3.5 oz/100 g smoked mackerel, skin and bones removed, into pieces
3.5 oz/100 g cooked shrimps
a handful of sea beans (salicornia) (or use dill if you cannot get hold of sea beans)
Extra: food processor or hand blender, aluminium foil
1. In a bowl mix the buckwheat flour with the all-purpose flour, buttermilk, egg, yeast, and a pinch of salt. Cover and let sit for about 1 hour (or put the batter in the fridge overnight).
2. Remove the skin of the beets. Puree beets and 3 tbsp of sour cream and the horseradish in a food processor or with a hand blender. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.
3. Heat a little of the butter or oil in a skillet. Using a tablespoon, drop small amounts of the batter in the pan to make small round bite-sized pancakes. Cook the blinis in batches: around 4-5 should fit in the pan. Cook the blinis 1-2 minutes per side until they are golden. Make 25-30 blinis in total. Keep them warm on a plate under aluminium foil.
4. Put the lukewarm blinis on a large plate and top each blini with a dollop of the beet puree. Divide the salmon, mackerel, and shrimp over and put a small dollop of sour cream on top. Top with a squeeze of lemon, some freshly ground pepper, and sea beans.
Roasted beets have more taste and are less ‘watery’ than cooked beets. Preheat the oven to 400F/200C. Rub the beets with some olive oil en put them in a small roasting tin or oven dish. Cover tightly with aluminium foil and bake for 45-60 minutes or until they can be easily pierced with a fork. Uncover and cool. Roast more beets than you need for this recipe; they are also good in salads or on sandwiches.
You can make the blinis ahead of time and put them in de fridge or freezer. Just reheat them several minutes in an oven of 400F/200C before serving.