I had a similar version of this dish with uni on a very thin cracker at Michael White’s Marea in New York last year and it was easily one of the best bites I had all year. The flavors and texture contrasts were amazing and the fatty film left on your lips from the melty lardo was nothing short of pure pleasure. Since uni has been in short supply lately I decided to go with some sake, sushi grade salmon instead. You can obviously adjust the ingredient sizes to fit your needs, but 1 baguette, 1/4 lb of lardo and 7 ozs of salmon was enough for about 10 pieces.
Sushi grade salmon (sake)
Lardo – thinly sliced by your butcher, unless you own a deli slicer…which I don’t
Smoked sea salt
4 – 5 Garlic cloves
Start by slicing the bread thin, about 1/4 inch, drizzle with EVOO and broil for about 2 minutes; be really careful as it will burn rather quickly if you don’t keep an eye on it. Lardo can be procured at most butchers, but call ahead as it’s not an everyday item; I scored mine at Star Provisions who usually has it. If you don’t know, lardo is salted, cured pork fat…and it’s amazing when sliced thin and melted with a torch.
Slice the salmon to your desired thickness, but I like mine about 1/4 inch. I think it has surpassed everything except uni and otoro for me in terms of sushi I desire.
To plate, place a piece of the salmon on the bread and top with a thin slice of lardo. Use a culinary torch or other incendiary device to melt the lardo and then top with a pinch of smoked sea salt.
Make this for your next dinner party or get together, and wow your friends; if they’re disgusted, they shouldn’t be your friends!