You can occasionally buy fresh herring roes, but most of the time they have been pre-frozen – they actually withstand sub-zero storage very well, compared to meat offal.
1tbsp vegetable or corn oil
120-150g piece of streaky bacon or pancetta, cut into 1cm chunks (or buy pre-cubed)
150g herring roes, fresh or frozen, rinsed and dried on kitchen paper
Plain flour for dusting
100-120g samphire, trimmed of any woody stalks and washed
A handful of small salad leaves, washed and ried
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the dressing
1tbsp cider vinegar
2tsp Tewkesbury or Dijon mustard
2tbsp groundnut oil
2tbsp rapeseed oil
Heat the vegetable oil in a heavy-based frying pan and cook the bacon on a medium heat, turning the pieces as they are cooking for 3-4 minutes, until nicely coloured. Remove with a slotted spoon, leaving the fat in the pan. Season and lightly flour the herring roes and fry in the same pan as the bacon on a medium heat for 4-5 minutes, turning them until nicely coloured. Remove and drain on some kitchen paper. Keep them warm with the bacon.
Blanch the samphire in boiling water for 20 seconds, then drain. Whisk all of the ingredients together for the dressing and season.
To serve, arrange the herring roes, bacon, salad leaves and samphire on serving plates and spoon over the dressing.