Stuffed Cucumbers with Smoked Salmon

When I was in college, I made something very similar to this version of a stuffed cucumber.  However, mine was the simple college version with all store bought ingredients.  Now, I have my own herbs I can use to brighten up the dish.  I remember cutting the cucumbers into slices, smearing on a teaspoon of herb cream cheese, and topping it with small slices of smoked salmon.  For my revised version, I made it appetizer friendly for a crowd.  I actually brought this dish to Ravinia to see Carrie Underwood.  A quick tip though…..put it in Tupperware with a lid.  I had mine on a plate with plastic wrap…not such a good idea.

Materials:

  • 1 pkg mini cucumbers (mine came with 7)
  • 8 oz. whipped cream cheese
  • 8 oz. smoked salmon, cut into strips
  • 2 T fresh chives, chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 1 T fresh tarragon (or dill), chopped
  • reserved inside of cucumber
  • salt for seasoning

Procedure:

1. Slice cucumbers in half, length wise, and scoop out the inside using a 1/2 t or mini melon baller.  Scoop the insides of the cucumbers into a separate bowl (you may need to chop them up first). Your cucumbers should resemble little boats. Lightly sprinkle salt on the insides of the cucumbers.

2. In a separate bowl, combine cream cheese and fresh herbs.  Then, add the reserved cucumber a little at a time until you get to a desired taste. Lay the cucumbers out flat so the inside is facing up.

3. Scoop the cream cheese mixture into a sandwich size Ziploc bag.  Squeeze it towards one of the corners.  Cut a small piece off the corner (it should only be air) and pipe the cream cheese mixture into the cucumbers (like icing a cake or a cookie). You will have cream cheese left over.  Do not add too much or it will get messy.

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4. Place several strips of smoked salmon on each stuffed cucumber. You will have some salmon left over if using 7 or 8 cucumbers. Top with fresh chives and serve!

Printable Recipe!

Observations: The cream cheese can get quite messy.  I would recommend letting the appetizer chill in the fridge once it is done.  If it sits out too long, the cream cheese soft and starts to run.  As I was making this, I realized I was going to have some cream cheese mixture and smoked salmon left.  I decided to use it for breakfast the next day on some eggs.  I made two eggs over easy topped with the smoked salmon and a dollop of the cream cheese mixture.  It was delicious!

Analysis: When I made this for Ravinia, I used half tarragon and half chives for the herbs.  I felt the tarragon was too overpowering, but I still liked the taste it gave the cream cheese.  In the materials, I cut down on the amount and tarragon and increased the amount of chives.  Right now, my dill is deader than a doornail and I don’t feel like buying it in the store.  Otherwise I would have tried dill since it marries so well with smoked salmon and cream cheese.  However, I was pleasantly surprised at how yummy the tarragon was.  I would definitely recommend making this if you like smoked salmon!  Even people who don’t like smoked salmon have tried this and loved it.  Let me know if you do!

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