Smoked Bluefish Pâté with Hardtack Crackers

  • Serves

    serves 6-8


Another New England staple, bluefish, gets the haute cuisine treatment at Puritan & Company in Cambridge, where chef-owner Will Gilson serves it as a smoky paté. The unami-rich dish is served with buttery hardtack crackers, an update of a New England staple. This recipe first appeared in our December 2014 issue with the story Boston Uncommon.


For the Crackers

  • 1 12 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 12 cup light rye flour
  • 12 cup whole wheat flour
  • 14 cup sugar
  • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
  • 1 12 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 34 cup ice-cold water

For the Pâté

  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup crème fraîche
  • 1 cup plain full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 14 cup minced chives
  • 2 tbsp. minced parsley
  • 2 tbsp. minced tarragon
  • 2 tsp. crushed red chile flakes
  • 2 tsp. Sriracha hot sauce
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Zest and juice of 2 lemons
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless smoked bluefish, flaked
  • Aleppo pepper, pickled mustard seeds, purslane, and sea beans, for garnish


Step 1

Make the crackers: Pulse flours, sugar, butter, and salt in a food processor into pea-size crumbles. With the motor running, slowly add water until dough forms. Form dough into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap; chill 30 minutes.

Step 2

Heat oven to 325°. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough ⅛" thick; trim edges to make a 21" square. Using a pastry cutter or knife, cut dough into 3" squares; transfer to parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Bake until crisp, about 40 minutes.

Step 3

Make the pâté: Stir cream cheese, crème fraîche, yogurt, chives, parsley, tarragon, chile flakes, hot sauce, salt, and lemon zest and juice in a bowl. Fold in bluefish and transfer pâté to four 8-oz. ramekins; invert onto serving platters. Garnish with Aleppo pepper, mustard seeds, purslane, and sea beans, if you like; serve with reserved crackers.

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