Friday, December 18, 2015

Smoked Fish Crostini

It sounds like a weird combination - smoked fish and slice of cucumber on a top of toasted pumpernickel bread, but give it a try. I bet it will become your new favorite appetizer.

Blog's Category: Hors D'oeuvre, International, My Staple Food, USSR-era Recipes


While this particular recipe is purely my creation, those former-USSRians can easily recognize well known, utterly popular in certain communities, appetizer. Indeed, whenever it appear on a feast table, it destined to be devoured first. Yes, it's that good.

For the recipe, I usually use small canned smoked fish, called spratz and sold in a specialized European food shops (see pictures below). Although any smoked fish can be used. 

To get guaranteed result, for a first time, stick to the recipe precisely (except for a spratz - use any available smoked fish). After that, next time, you can explore different variations of it: for example, use thin tomato slices in place of cucumber, or add a parsley leaf. 

What is it?

Smoked fish piece, slice of cucumber and mayo, in a backward order, go on a top of toasted pumpernickel bread, generously rubbed with a fresh garlic. 

Taste Description

It tastes like heaven for those who likes smoked fish (who doesn't anyway?). Bold in flavors, think of smoked fish and garlic, overflown with umami magic, these crostinies are surprisingly light. You'll find yourself in a situation of eating them non-stop, so calculate accordingly, figuring how many you need to prepare :) Oh, forgot to mention, imagine all that smokey-garlicky with a crunchiness of a  toast, and refreshing cucumber aroma...

How to Serve

Serve as hors d'oeuvre for your friends or family gathering. You can prepare them few hours in advance (cover with a plastic wrap and keep in a fridge). But the best part is when you accidentally have a leftovers - they are the same yummy the next day (despite cucumber slices looking a bit sad).


As I mentioned, if you never tried this type of crostini, stick to the recipe to a point. If you experienced user of Smoked Fish Crostini, look below for variations:

- In place of mayo try to use pesto, honey mustard, pureed avocado or unsalted butter.

- Instead of cucumber - thin slice of tomato, or couple thin slices of radish.

- For a bread try thin toasted slice of baguette, or rye bread.

Smoked Fish Crostini

  • pumpernickel cocktail bread (small very thin slices of pumpernickel bread)
  • fresh garlic cloves (surprisingly, you will need more cloves than you think ;))
  • cucumber, thinly sliced
  • good quality mayonnaise
  • smoked fish

- Toast your bread slices until nice and golden. 

- Nicely rub both sides with a garlic.

- Place bread pieces on a shallow plate (or on your vegetable chopping board). Spoon a couple tablespoons of mayonnaise into plastic sandwich bag, in a corner of it and cut tiny piece of corner off. Squeeze mayo on a toast in a pattern you like (in a one direction, or swirls, or web, or messy :))

- Place one or two slices of cucumber on top. Top with a smoked fish. Voi la! Enjoy!



Of course, you can just spread thin layer of mayo on a toast, but, interestingly, the way shown above is not just prettier but also more delicious!

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