Forman & Field
31 January 2019
I tried a new canapé at a party recently which was so divine I demanded to know what wonderous ingredient played the starring role and I learnt that it was Royal Fillet of salmon, which I had never heard of so I took furiously to Google.
H. Forman & Sons was the first hit and so I got in touch and shortly received an email back from the very charismatic Lance Forman inviting me on a tour of his premises. So off I went to Hackney on a chilly Wednesday to discover more.
Lance greeted me and dispensed a brief history of the family run company, which has been passed down through generations since it opened in 1905. On we went with our blue plastic shoe protectors for the tour of the factory, where everyone was hard at work; gutting, scaling, deboning and packaging fish. All fish is delivered within 48 hours of being caught, so it’s uber fresh; the quality of each of his products is paramount.
The smoked salmon produced here has the prestigious protected status of ‘London Cure’ a label akin to Champagne and Parma ham in terms of criteria to fulfil. They smoke the fish with bone in, using only a little oak smoke and salt, to enhance the salmon’s flavour rather than overpower it.
Just half of the salmon produced here goes into retail, with the remaining 50% going straight into London’s best restaurants and hotels, delivered on demand and not vacuum packed. I now often notice the rather regal Forman’s vans darting around in London traffic carrying their precious cargo.
Our tour came to an end with a tasting platter with all manner of wares on offer – gin & tonic cured salmon, salmon jerky ( a must try) truffled Royal Fillet and other delectable salmon related offerings. Everything from here is delicious and the care and attention that they pay to the preparation really shines through. Well worth your extra pennies if you see any on shelves near you.
The Royal Fillet remains my firm favourite, and rather handily, you can find a link to the recipe for using the beetroot cured variety (because I love pink) for a fool proof canapé, here (also pictured to the left).
You can find everything produced at H. Forman & Sons on their website.
Forman & Field
0203 601 5464