Lumpfish roe, the Danish caviar, is in season right now. The roe of lumpfish is quite popular in Denmark and is considered the caviar of the North. The season is short. However, it can be frozen and enjoyed all year around. The season starts around the middle of February and if we are lucky, it can last until May, sometimes June. I like to make lots of blinis, freeze them, and heat them up when I want a nice appetizer. If you can’t get lumpfish roe, salmon roe and paddlefish roe is also good. Smoked salmon is just as good. In Denmark, lumpfish roe is often put into small jars and can be bought all year around. Sometimes it can be black or even green. It is, of course, best fresh in the spring. Danish lumpfish roe can be bought on the internet and in many shops around the world.
Blinis with Lumpfish Roe, Red Onions and
Makes 25-30 blinis
1½ oz buckwheat flour
4½ oz white plain flour
3/4 tsp. salt
5 g dried yeast
5 oz creme fraiche
6 oz sweet milk
2 eggs, separated
1 oz butter
For the topping:
11½ oz (325 g) Danish lumpfish roe
1 or 2 red onions, finely chopped
8 oz creme fraiche
garnish: a few dill sprigs and wedges of lemon
To make the blinis, sift the buckwheat flour, plain flour and salt together into a large bowl and then sprinkle in the yeast. Place the crème fraîche and milk in a small saucepan and warm it gently – it must only be slightly warm, as too much heat will kill the yeast.
Add the egg yolks to the milk, mix them in with a whisk and after that pour into the flour mixture. Whisk everything until you have a thick batter, then cover the bowl with a clean tea cloth and leave it in a warm place for about 1 hour.
After 1 hour the batter will be spongy and bubbly, whisk up the egg whites until they form stiff peaks and gently fold them into the batter. Cover with the cloth again and leave as before for another hour.
When you’re ready to make the blinis, begin by melting the butter in a heavy-based frying pan. keep the pan on a medium heat and add 1½ tablespoons of batter. This amount should give you a blini about 4 inches (10 cm) in diameter. Don’t worry at this stage if it looks too thick, it isn’t, it’s just light and puffy.
After 40 seconds, flip the blini over and give it 30 seconds on the other side. Transfer it to a wire cooling-rack and repeat, brushing the pan with butter each time. This mixture should give you 18-20 blinis.
When all the blinis are made and have cooled, wrap them in foil parcels, with 6 laid out flat in each one.
To assemble,serve the blinis on warm plates, giving each person 2 to start with, and top with 1 large spoonful of caviar, 1 large spoonful of chopped red onions, add a tablespoon of very cold crème fraîche and garnish with sprigs of fresh dill.