I am always looking for new appetizers and snacks for parties or just to have on the weekends. I try to incorporate veggies as much as possible to keep the appetizers light. One appetizer I really like to make is a smoked salmon spread. I use light cream cheese and reduced fat sour cream to lessen the calories but maintain flavor.
The other day I had an English cucumber leftover from another recipe that I did not want to waste so I decided to make a quick appetizer by filling the cucumber with my smoked salmon spread. I just tweaked the recipe a little by adding the scooped out center of the cucumber to the spread to add another layer of texture. My hubby is big on textures when it comes to food which has made me more aware of including different textures when I cook. I think it helps to enhance most dishes when you can have layers of flavor and layers of textures. What better way to create a party in your mouth and keep the experience of eating interesting than by tickling your taste buds with variety of textures and flavor!
To me, smoked salmon and cucumbers is a fancier version of celery filled with pimento cheese or peanut butter. A great appetizer or snack that is easy to make and wonderful to eat.
Smoked Salmon and Cucumber
1 pkg smoked salmon diced
1 English cucumber (strip skin to decorate with stripes)
½ tsp old bay seasoning
½ tsp dill
½ tsp lemon zest
½ tsp seasoned salt
½ tsp cracked black pepper
½ cup softened cream cheese
¼ cup sour cream
juice of 1lemon
Scoop out the center of cucumber and reserve. In a medium bowl cream together the reserved cucumber center, cream cheese and sour cream. Add lemon juice, zest, dill and seasonings to cream cheese mixture. Blend together until well mixed. Gently incorporate the salmon into the mixture.
Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise. Cut into bite-size pieces. Spread salmon mixture into the center of each cucumber bite. Arrange on a tray and then refrigerate until ready to serve. Sprinkle with smoked paprika prior to serving.