Smoked Mackerel Pâté

Smoked mackerel pâté on toast

In what seems now like a different era, although it is barely weeks ago, before the Corvid-19 pandemic changed our lives, I made a simple smoked mackerel pâté for a weekend lunch.

Since lockdown began, I have been carving out a routine, shaped by listening to my internal rhythm. I have been on many silent retreats and I seem naturally to have tuned into a retreat mode. I’m tuning in to what I need, when I need it and the rhythm of my days is slowly taking on a shape.

I’m moving less and so I am eating less. The anticipation of the pleasure of a simple lunch after a walk around the park is taking on a new significance as I readjust my perspective of what I am focusing on and what is important. Little, simple pleasures. A piece of toast with a simple mackerel pate. Eating with the sun’s rays breaking through the blinds and bouncing off the white table. A gentle breeze through the open window. The gratitude for those rays of sun.

Life has slowed down. Cooking has slowed down. Eating has slowed down. It shouldn’t take a lockdown to notice more, but there you go.

Smoked mackerel pâté on toast


2 fillets of smoked mackerel

1 tbsp crème fresh

2 tsp Dijon mustard

A crack of black pepper

1tbsp chopped dill

A squeeze of lemon juice

2 Slices of toast made with the bread of your choosing

½ red onion, finely sliced

1 tbsp white wine vinegar


In a bowl, combine the vinegar and red onion. Leave while you prepare the pate.

In another bowl, flake the mackerel and add the crème fresh, mustard, black pepper and lemon and mix.

Spoon over the toast and top with some red onion and dill.