I can't remember which day it was this week that I suddenly developed a craving for NY bagels. Marc only eats smoked salmon in sushi form and has a personal vendetta against bagels (they're too chewy? That's the point!) so he couldn't understand the appeal. I tried to make a point by point argument for it but in the end decided it was easier to make the damn thing and demonstrate. I didn't wind up doing that (forgot to purchase key components: bagel and capers) but I stayed with the smoked salmon theme and produced some neat little sandwiches.
I've used smoked salmon for catering before (smoked salmon omelet rolls for example) and I think it's one of the best ingredients for introducing a bit of class without having to work for it. These little sandwiches are a great example of something quick and simple that is not only tasty but filling.
The filling I went with comprised of a lemony cream cheese and spanish onion mixture, smoked salmon and fresh alfalfa sprouts. You could stick with the classic NY combo minus sprouts and with the addition of capers.
I made 4 big sandwiches in total (i.e. from 8 slices of bread) and cut some into ribbons and stamped some into rounds. I think they're adorable for catering. Just add a little toothpick! Also, it goes without saying that you could keep the sandwiches full-sized for regular lunches.
Salmon and Cream Cheese Ribbon Sandwiches
- 125g (1/2 packet) of cream cheese, at room temperature
- zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
- 200g smoked salmon slices
- alfalfa sprouts (I used about 1/3 of a 125g punnet)
- 8 slices of soft bread (an even, square shape helps)
1. On a large plate, mash together the cream cheese, lemon juice, lemon zest and red onion. Use a plate rather than a bowl because it's easier to smoosh it all with a fork.
I've been eating these for lunch almost every day this week and it's not getting old. The lemon cream cheese goes perfectly with the salmon and I personally love the alfalfa sprouts as a compliment. They add a welcome freshness.
The great thing about cream cheese on bread is that it tends not to soak in and make it soggy. These can work well for entertaining or even if you just want to make your lunch the night before and not have it ruined.