Party Appetizer: Smoked Salmon Crostini

Dsc00523 For our honeymoon, my husband and I went on a cruise.  The cruise ship was owned by a Scandinavian company, so at breakfast, lunch, and dinner there was always an overabundance of fresh Norwegian smoked salmon to pile onto our plates.  I’m pretty sure that I ate some for every meal and, to my husband’s embarrassment, I never grew tired of it, especially since I knew how expensive smoked salmon was if I were to buy it at my local grocery store.  Not long after we returned from our trip, I was shopping at Trader Joe’s, and I was ecstatic to discover that they sold all kinds of delicious smoked salmon at very reasonable prices.  I no longer needed to wait for special occasions to splurge on one of my favorite foods–I could mix it into omelets, pile it onto bagels, and make my mom’s Smoked Salmon Crostini all the time!

I maintain a pretty healthy diet, so when the holidays roll around, I end up not indulging in most of the traditional snacks and appetizers that are served at parties.  As a result, I am always looking for healthy, delicious and festive hors d’oeuvre recipes that I can serve for holiday entertaining, so that I don’t have to feel like I am missing out.  The Smoked Salmon Crostini is something that my mom made for a dinner party that I was helping her with.  Immediately, I jotted down the recipe as it had all of the qualities that I was looking for in a healthy party food:  it had multiple layers of flavors and textures, it was filling, attractive, sophisticated, and it tasted fantastic.  It is a nice surprise amid the usual dips, stuffed mushrooms, and mini quiches.  This recipe is also pretty easy to assemble, so I only have a few tips for you!:

  • The toasted bread slices can be prepared up to 8 hours in advance.  Cover and let stand at room temperature until you are ready to use them.
  • If you want to add a little more “pizazz” to this hors d’oeuvre, I sometimes will add a little bit of chopped red onion or some drained capers to the mustard mixture prior to spreading it on the slices of bread.  I’ll also place some red onion on top with the sprig of dill for garnish.
  • If you want to make the recipe even lighter, serve it all on a whole grain cracker as opposed to the crostini.

Smoked Salmon Crostini

Serves 10-12

Ingredients:

1 regular or whole grain baguette

Extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 cup Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon of finely chopped fresh dill

1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese

5-6 ounces smoked salmon

Fresh dill for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.  Line two baking sheets with aluminum foil or parchment paper.  Slice the baguette, on a sharp diagonal, into 1/2 inch slices.  Place the slices on the prepared baking sheets and then lightly brush or drizzle them with some of the olive oil.  Bake the baguette slices until golden around the edges, 8 to 10 minutes.  Let cool slightly.

In a small bowl, mix the Dijon mustard and the dill.  Brush or spread each of the baguette slices with a thin layer of the Dijon mixture.  Sprinkle about a teaspoon of goat cheese on top of the mustard and then top with a small slice of the smoked salmon.  Place a small sprig if dill on top for garnish.

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