Notes: These pastries are an appetizer-size take on the classic Russian kulebiaka, an elaborate savory pie with a filling of salmon or sturgeon and rice. The original is made with yeast dough, but purchased puff pastry is an easy shortcut. You can make the filling (steps 1 through 3) for this streamlined version up to 3 days ahead; cover and chill.
1 cup fat-skimmed chicken broth
1/2 cup basmati rice
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup minced onion
1/2 cup finely chopped mushrooms (common, exotic, or a mixture)
3/4 cup dry white wine
8 ounces boned, skinned salmon fillet, rinsed, patted dry, and cut into 1-inch chunks
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground pepper
2 tablespoons chopped mixed fresh herbs such as chervil, chives, dill, parsley, or tarragon
3 sheets (each 9 in. square) thawed frozen puff pastry (1 1/2 packages, 17.3 oz. each)
1 large egg, beaten to blend with 1 tablespoon water
How to Make It
In a 1 1/2- to 2-quart pan, bring chicken broth and rice to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until rice is tender to bite, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a 2- to 3-quart pan over medium heat, melt butter. Add onion and mushrooms and stir often until onion is soft and liquid has evaporated, 7 to 8 minutes. Add wine, increase heat, and bring to a boil; add salmon chunks and reduce heat to maintain a simmer. Cook, stirring often, until salmon is broken into flakes and most of the liquid has evaporated, 7 to 10 minutes. Stir in rice, salt, pepper, and herbs.
Cut each puff pastry sheet into nine 3-inch squares. On a lightly floured work surface, with a lightly floured rolling pin, roll each square once in each direction to flatten and stretch to approximately 4 inches. Place 1 tablespoon filling in the middle of each square. Brush edges lightly with egg mixture and fold diagonally over filling to make triangles; pinch edges to seal. Arrange pastries 1/2 inch apart on two cooking parchment-lined 12- by 15-inch baking sheets. Lightly brush the top of each pastry with egg mixture.
Bake pastries in a 375° regular or convection oven until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve warm.