Better Than A Bagel

Here in the San Francisco Bay Area, we’re pretty spoiled when it comes to food. And some of the best treasures are found in tiny holes in the wall. One such hole in the wall is the Creekside Smokehouse in El Granada just north of Half Moon Bay.

One day, Boy and I were making one of our many drives up Highway One.  We got to talking…we wanted some smoked salmon.  On one of our other drives, we had seen small road signs for a smokehouse.  We figured we’d take a look.  Just off of Highway One, we pulled up to the Creekside Smokehouse.  The gal behind the counter asked if we had ever been there.  We told her no, it was indeed our first time.  To that, she responded by pulling out every single sample in the house (including one for rich salmon jerky which they never sample because it sells so quickly).  Let me tell you, it was some of the best smoked salmon (several varieties), smoked salmon salad, smoked albacore, salmon jerky, and smoked gouda I have ever had.  And needless to say…we bought a lot of it.

Of course, that meant we had to make a Toas-Tite as a tribute to the beautiful salmon.

Smoked Salmon and Cream Cheese Toas-Tite

Ingredients:

  • Two slices of country potato bread
  • Softened butter
  • 2 ounces (or a little more) of cream cheese
  • Four rectangular slices of smoked salmon (about one to two ounces)
  • A sprinkle of chopped green onion

Directions:

  1. Place the cream cheese in a small bag and cut off the tip.
  2. Pipe the cream cheese in small rosettes onto a piece of aluminum foil; place the foil into your favorite food storage container (Pyrex, Tupperware, or otherwise).
  3. Put the container and cream cheese discs into the freezer for 30 minutes to an hour (and longer probably won’t hurt it).  This will help keep its cream cheese consistency even inside the hot sandwich.
  4. When everything is frozen to your satisfaction, it’s Toas-Tite time.
  5. Begin by preheating your Toas-Tite.  Be careful not to burn yourself!  A hot Toas-Tite will allow you to get nice and toasty bread without completely liquefying the cream cheese.
  6. Spread the softened butter on one side of each piece of bread.
  7. Place the buttered side down on each of the clam shells (quickly if you can)
  8. On one side, place half of your frozen cream cheese rosettes.
  9. Put your four little slices of smoked salmon on top of that with your green onion sprinkles.
  10. Top the filling with the second half of the cream cheese.
  11. Close the Toas-Tite and trim the excess bread with a knife.
  12. Place the Toas-Tite back over your heat source to finish off the toasting.
  13. When you’re ready, remove the sandwich from the grill and let it cool for a few minutes.
  14. Then enjoy!

Notes

While pre-heating the Toas-Tite before layering in the filling is not 100% necessary, it will let you get a head start on toasting the sandwich.  The less time you have the Toas-Tite over the heat, the more your cream cheese will keep its consistency and the less the smoked salmon will cook.

A huge thanks goes out to Nicko of ChefTalk.com for suggesting to freeze the cream cheese.  In his days as a chef, Nicko had frozen goat cheese before frying it to help the cheese maintain its consistency.  And as it turns out, it works just as well with cream cheese.

Conclusion

This is a great Toas-Tite take on a brunch classic.  If you like smoked salmon, you’ll definitely like this recipe.  I for one love it as much as the Toas-Tite so combining them is a dream come true.  Plus it’s fun to pipe out the cream cheese.

Tags: ,

Categories: Savory Toas-Tites

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