An easy-to-put-together cold appetizer like this is key for cocktail parties, since all the elements can be made ahead, refrigerated, and then assembled at the last minute. This simple, sophisticated recipe is practically foolproof—all you have to do is combine the ingredients in a food processor, pipe onto English cucumber rounds, and top with your favorite caviar. It’s worth spending a few dollars on a star piping tip to make the presentation extra beautiful, and don’t skimp on the quality of either the smoked salmon or the caviar.
What to buy: Fromage blanc, a fresh cream cheese, can be found at cheese stores and gourmet markets. Good-quality whipped cream cheese is your best bet for a substitute.
Special equipment: You’ll need a large piping bag and a 1/2-inch star piping tip for this recipe.
- Yield: About 70 pieces
- Difficulty: Easy
- Total: 25 mins
- Active: 25 mins
- 8 ounces smoked salmon, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup fromage blanc (about 7 1/2 ounces)
- 1 tablespoon finely grated red onion
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (from about 1 medium lemon)
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarsely chopped capers
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 medium English cucumbers (about 18 ounces), sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 1 (2-ounce) jar caviar or 1/4 cup salmon roe
- Place the smoked salmon, fromage blanc, onion, lemon zest and juice, capers, salt, and measured pepper in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Process, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary, until smooth, about 20 seconds. At this point, the salmon mixture can be transferred to a piping bag fitted with a 1/2-inch star tip and refrigerated for up to 4 hours.
- When ready to serve, arrange the cucumber slices on a serving platter. Pipe about 2 teaspoons of the salmon mixture onto each slice. Top with the desired amount of caviar or salmon roe (you may have some left over) and serve immediately.