Herring Under a Fur Coat


This festive traditional Russian dish from Kachka in Portland, Oregon, is a layered pickled herring salad that gets its name from the grated vegetables and sieved eggs that top it. If you don't have ring molds, it's just as delicious composed on a platter. Slideshow:  More Salad Recipes 

Herring Under a Fur Coat
Photo: © Kari Young
Active Time:
1 hrs
Total Time:
2 hrs


  • 2 medium beets

  • 2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled

  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and halved crosswise

  • 2 large hard-boiled eggs

  • 1 cup finely chopped pickled herring

  • 1/4 cup minced sweet onion

  • 1/4 cup canola oil

  • 2 tablespoons chopped dill, plus sprigs for garnish

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise

  • Kosher salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 450°. Wrap the beets in foil and roast for about 1 hour, until tender. Let cool slightly, then peel.

  2. Meanwhile, in a saucepan, cover the potatoes and carrots with at least 2 inches of water and boil until tender, about 15 minutes for the carrots and 20 minutes for the potatoes. Let cool to room temperature. Grate the potatoes on the medium holes of a box grater and transfer to a small bowl. Repeat with the carrots and beets, keeping the vegetables in separate bowls.

  3. Halve the eggs. Push the egg whites through a fine sieve into a small bowl. Clean the sieve, then push the yolks through into another small bowl.

  4. In another bowl, mix the herring with the onion, oil and chopped dill.

  5. In a small bowl, mix the mayonnaise with 2 tablespoons of the grated beets.

  6. Place a 4-inch round ring mold in the center of a serving plate. Using the back of a spoon, spread one-fourth of the grated potatoes inside the mold in an even layer. Season with salt. Spread one-fourth of the herring mixture on top in an even layer. Repeat the layering with one-fourth each of the carrots and beets. Season with salt. Spread 2 tablespoons of the beet mayonnaise on top. Garnish with some of the sieved egg whites, sieved egg yolks and dill sprigs. Carefully remove the ring mold and wipe it clean. Repeat to form 3 more molded salads.

Make Ahead

The cooked vegetables can be refrigerated overnight.

Suggested Pairing

Dry, mineral-tinged Grüner Veltliner.

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