600 grams moist smoked fish
400 grams Agria or other floury potatoes, peeled
2 cups milk
pinch saffron threads
3 tablespoons lemon juice
4 tablespoons ground almonds
2 cloves garlic, crushed
paprika, extra virgin olive oil and lemon wedges for garnishing
300 grams assorted olives
½ cup olive oil
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
6 small dried chillies
10 whole cloves garlic, unpeeled
Remove the skin and all the bones from the smoked fish and check for any stray fish scales. Pull into small pieces and place in a food processor.
Peel and dice the potatoes and toast the saffron in a small, dry pan over a gentle heat. Place both in a saucepan with the milk and 1 teaspoon of salt. Simmer until tender. Strain over a bowl and reserve the milk. Push the potatoes through a potato ricer or mash until smooth. Keep hot. Add the reserved milk, almonds, garlic and the lemon juice to the fish and blend to a smooth paste. Add the hot potatoes and process again. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper. Add extra lemon juice or milk if needed.
Preheat the oven to 200°C.
Olives: Combine all the ingredients in a baking dish and roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes, turning frequently. Allow to cool then store covered in the refrigerator.
To serve: Spoon the skordalia onto a serving platter. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkling of paprika. Pile the olives and some croutes next to the skordalia and garnish with lemon wedges. If making the skordalia the day before serving, reheat in a microwave until warm and thin down with a little hot milk if needed.