Salmon en Croute

1.2kg (2½ Lbs) Salmon Fillet (2 pieces) the same length, skinned
500g (1Lb) Packet of ready-made puff pastry
200g (7oz) Fennel, roughly chopped
30g (1oz) Bread, roughly torn
6 Slices of Parma Ham
3 Tablespoons of chopped Dill
1 Egg yolk
Rind and juice of half a lemon
Salt and black pepper

(1) Set oven to hot, Gas Mark 7 or 220°C / 425°F.

(2) Check Salmon for bones, and see that the fillets fit on top of each other.

(3) Finely chop the Fennel and bread. Add the Dill, lemon rind and seasoning. Sqeeze lemon juice over the fish.

(4) Mould the Fennel mixture on to 1 fillet, then place the other fillet on top, skinned side up.

(5) Roll out the pastry to about 35.5cm (14") square, checking the length of the Salmon.

(6) Cut the pastry in half. Put 1 strip on a wetted baking sheet. Prick with a fork, then lay 4 of the Ham strips across at right angles.

(7) Put the stuffed Salmon fillets on top, bring the Ham up round the sides and place the other 2 slices of Ham on top to make a parcel. Brush the pastry edge with a little beaten egg.

(8) Roll out the other strip of pastry an extra 5cm (2") in from a short edge. Slash at diagonals across the fold, making the slashes about 3cm (1¼") long and leaving another 6cm (2½") at the other end.

(9) Pull the folded pastry apart, and lay it over the top of the wrapped fish. Open out the lattice and ease it down the sides, to meet the edges of the base pastry.

(10) Seal well, then trim them straight scalloping the edge. Brush with the remaining egg wash.

(11) Bake for 20 minutes, then turn down oven to Gas Mark 5, 190°C / 375°F and bake for another 20-25 minutes.

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