Smoked Mackerel Pate with Pickled Cucumber Salad

This sounds a lot more complicated than it is. All you need is a couple of fillets of carefully boned smoked mackerel, a jar of creamed horseradish, a chunk of cucumber and a crisp lettuce heart. The vinaigrette is a thin creamy mix of mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, honey, lemon juice and olive oil. With hot toast, this combination of a roughly made pate-cum-mess with a crisp salad and doorsteps of buttered toast makes a smashing simple, quick lunch or snack.

Serves 2
Prep: 15 min

10cm piece cucumber
1 tbsp wine or cider vinegar
2 tbsp mayonnaise
2 heaped tbsp creamed horseradish
squeeze of lemon
few sprigs flat leaf parsley, optional
2 or 3 boned smoked mackerel fillets
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp runny honey
2 tbsp olive oil
1 crisp lettuce heart
bread for toast

Use a potato peeler to skin the cucumber. Split lengthways and use a teaspoon to scrape out seeds and juice. Place flat side down and slice into thin half moons. Place on a plate and mix with 1 tbsp vinegar. Place 1 tbsp mayo in a mixing/serving bowl, stir in the horseradish with plenty of black pepper, a squeeze of lemon and chopped parsley if using. Peel the mackerel off the skin, flake the flesh into the bowl taking care to check and remove any stray bones. Fold the fish through the dressing. Make the vinaigrette, place second tbsp mayo in a salad bowl and mix in 1 tbsp lemon juice, honey, then beat in the olive oil to make a creamy dressing. I only used half this amount of vin and poured the rest into a jam jar to keep in the fridge for the next salad. Scoop the cu into a salad bowl, add washed salad leaves (I usually make a pile, halve them lengthways and then across to make more manageable pieces), toss and serve with toast.