cucumber “paper” smoked salmon rolls

plated-rolls-second-one-platetwo-plates-cucumber-salmon-rollsI don’t know what came over me this morning and why I decided to do more work in this single meal than getting dressed and eating all my others meals combined.  Ah, but I do know: the texture, the cream, the smokiness.

cucumber-salmon-rolls-beginning

rolled-in-plastic-cucumberI guess I could have just done cereal, but how fun is that?

Sometimes very fun.  I bite my tongue.

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But so are these.  When I worked at Le Pur’ Restaurant at The Park Hyatt Place Vendome, we used this technique all the time of rolling up things in plastic wrap and then refrigerating them, creating a fantastic combination of flavors with an enjoyable “stuffed tootsie roll” type of texture.  From fruit to meat to vegetables to avocados, all things were sliced thinly, stuffed, then rolled.  Maybe cut, maybe not.

roll-solo-beginningfull-view-middle-phaseFor breakfast this morning, having discovered remainders of a vegan cream cheese, bits of smoked salmon, and half a cucumber, my eyes and hands went nostalgic and brought back some old restaurant technique.  It was so good.

rolling-cucumber-salmonsqueezing-onto-plate-cucumber-rollThe season where we all start entertaining everyone is rapidly approaching, and these little morsels will impress at your next function/happy hour/breakfast nook.  They’re pretty void of any carbohydrates, full of omega-3’s, and more importantly, delicious.

cucumber “paper” smoked salmon rolls

Serves about 10
Prep time 15 minutes
Allergy Fish
Dietary Corn Free, Dairy Free, Diabetic, Egg Free, Gluten Free, Lactose Free, Nut Free, Vegetarian
Meal type Appetizer, Breakfast, Lunch, Main Dish, Salad, Side Dish, Snack, Starter
Misc Child Friendly, Freezable, Gourmet, Pre-preparable, Serve Cold

Ingredients

  • 1 cucumber (peeled, and cut into 3" (10 cm) segments)
  • 1/2 cup smoked salmon (or other protein of choice, cut into 1 cm thick pieces)
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese or vegan cream cheese or boursin (...just a spreadable creamy cheese thing. Or tahini if you don't have it.)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill

Directions

Step 1 Marinate your cucumbers: using either a Japanese Mandoline or a sharp knife, cut the cucumber segments into thin pieces of "paper"... the thinner the better. (Hence the use of the mandoline!) Coat them in a small bowl with olive oil and dill. Salt and pepper to taste. Let rest for about 5-10 minutes.
Step 2 Prepare your station: on a large cutting board, spread out a piece of plastic wrap and get a sharp knife close by to cut the paper.
Step 3 Assembly: take 3 "sheets" of cucumber and form them into a square on your plastic wrap. Do the same two inches apart, and keep going until there is no more room on your plastic wrap (keeping them inches apart, of course.)
Step 4 Make a thin line of salmon in the middle of each square. Then put a bit of cream cheese-thing next to it. Repeat with all rolls.
Step 5 Using your sharp knife, cut in the middle of each square, giving each its own plastic square surrounding it.
Step 6 Roll it: using the plastic wrap, roll one half of the cucumber over the filling, press it down so it sticks, and then bring the plastic wrap down. Do the same with the other side, but keep rolling so that the plastic is tightly wrapped around the entirety of the roll. Do with all rolls.
Step 7 Let chill in the refrigerator to set for at least 15 minutes before serving. Can be made the day in advance.
Step 8 Serve a la carte, with crackers, or as a part of an elaborate hors d'oeuvres plate. Oh la la! You're a star.

plated-cucumber-rolls

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