Yield: 4 Servings
1 small picking cucumber, sliced lengthwise 1/8-inch (1/3 cm) thick, only saving 4 pieces that have no seeds
¼ cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
¼ white or yellow onion, finely minced
1 clove garlic, minced
½ cup chicken broth
3 red bell peppers, stems, seeds, and ribs removed, and small diced
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
12 ounces (340g) sushi-grade skinless salmon, small diced
1/3 cup crème fraiche
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 small bunch sprouted chives (non-sprouted chives can be used as well)
salt to taste
Place the cucumber slices in a single layer in a medium baking dish.
Place a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the vinegar, water, sugar, and the 1 teaspoon of salt. Stir the mixture over the heat until the sugar and salt dissolve. Pour the vinegar over the cucumbers and place in the refrigerator until thoroughly cooled, about 1 hour.
Place a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the oil followed by the onion and cook until tender. Add the garlic and cook just until you can smell its aroma. Pour in the chicken broth and add 1/3 of the diced red bell peppers. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the peppers are completely tender. Working in 2 batches, process the mixture in a blender until completely smooth. Pass it through a fine strainer and return it to a medium saucepan over medium heat. Fold in the remaining 2/3 of the diced red bell pepper mixture along with the red wine vinegar and salt to taste. Simmer the mixture until it thickens to a jam consistency. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
Once the pickles and red pepper relish have cooled, place the salmon, crème fraiche, lemon zest, lemon juice, and salt to taste in a medium bowl and gently fold to combine.
Place a ring mold, 2-inches (5 cm) in diameter and at least 2-inches (5 cm) tall, on a plate. Remove one of the pickled cucumber strips from the pickling liquid and gently pat to remove the excess liquid. Place the pickle in the ring mold, pressing it against the sides of the bottom of the mold. Spoon enough salmon into the mold to fill to the top and smooth the top with a butter knife. Gently remove the mold. Place ¼ of the fresh chives on top of the salmon and scatter ¼ of the red bell pepper relish around the salmon. Repeat with the remaining 3 plates and serve.