Smoked Salmon Devilled Eggs

I love devilled eggs and eggs with smoked salmon are so good together, I think this might be my new favourite devilled egg recipe.

Smoked salmon devilled eggs2

I’ve added horseradish, cream cheese and dill to my eggs, but Dijon mustard can be used if you don’t like horseradish. If you are using horseradish though, make sure it’s the smooth kind. I bought some a while ago that had big chunks of horseradish in and it wasn’t good at all!

I’ve topped the eggs with a little scroll of smoked salmon, but you could top with capers if that’s your thing. I’m a bit hit and miss with capers, but they do work well with the eggs and salmon.

I think its worth paying a little more for your smoked salmon too. Whenever I have been tempted to buy some ‘cheap’ smoked salmon, I have always been disappointed. A lot of it is slimy, salty and fishy. Really good smoked salmon is a joy to eat.

Devilled eggs are the perfect finger food for a buffet, Easter brunch table or any party.

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Ingredients:
12 extra large eggs
75g cream cheese
1tbs mayonnaise
200g smoked salmon – finely chopped, plus a litte extra for garnish
1-2tbs prepared horseradish or Dijon mustard
1tbs lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper
Fresh dill

Method:
You want the yolks in the middle of the eggs when you halve them. There are a couple of ways to do this – either lay the eggs on their sides a couple of hours before you boil them, or give them a gentle shake. This will centre the yolk, making it easier to scoop it out.

To boil the eggs, I like to place my eggs in cold water, bring them up to the boil, turn off the heat, put the lid on and leave them for 16 minutes. This is for room temperature, extra large eggs. If you use them straight from the fridge, they will take a little longer.

When the eggs are ready, place in iced water, before carefully peeling them.

Slice each egg in half lengthways and scoop the yolks out into a bowl.

Smoked salmon devilled eggs

Mash the yolks with the cream cheese, mayonnaise, horseradish, lemon and black pepper until completely smooth, before mixing with the finely chopped smoked salmon and a little chopped dill. Taste to make sure it’s just right. I haven’t included any salt as I think there is enough, but adjust to personal taste.

Place the filling in a piping bag, fitted with a star tip and pipe the filling into the waiting egg halves.

Garnish with a little snipped dill and top with a scroll of smoked salmon.

Smoked Salmon devilled egg

These are a delicious alternative to chocolate eggs for Easter!

Caprese Skewers

For the perfect party food, these skewers are easy to make and serve.  A portable salad on a stick that is not only colourful, but delicious to eat too.

Caprese skewers4

This is not really a recipe – it’s more of an assembly job – tomatoes, basil, mozzarella, a little seasoning and drizzled with a sweet balsamic glaze.

Caprese skewers1

I used a ready made balsamic glaze for this that clings to the salad perfectly, but you don’t need to buy it.  For a balsamic reduction, just boil a cup of balsamic vinegar until it has reduced by half.  It will become thicker, a little sticky and coat the back of a spoon.

Caprese skewers

Ingredients:
Small tomatoes – I’ve used a mixture of red and yellow cherry tomatoes and jewel tomatoes that I found at the supermarket
Basil leaves – go for the smaller leaves if possible, or you can fold the extra-large ones around the cheese and tomatoes. I got mine from a living plant as the pre-packed bunches tend to have very large leaves.
1-2 containers of small mozzarella balls (bocconcini)
Balsamic glaze
Italian seasoning with chilli
Salt and pepper to taste
Bamboo or metal skewers – I used 18cm bamboo skewers

Method:
Toss the bocconcini with a sprinkle of the Italian seasoning and then simply thread the tomatoes, mozzarella balls and basil alternately on the skewers.

Sprinkle over freshly ground black pepper and a little salt if desired and drizzle over the balsamic glaze and serve.

Caprese skewers3

These are so pretty and light for summer entertaining, parties or a barbecue.  Serve with cold white wine, prosecco or a summer punch.

Smoky and Spicy Cheese Ball

Since I made my very first cheese ball here, it was so good, I have been needing an excuse to create new ones.

cheeseball2b

With the festive season upon us, a cheese ball is the perfect make-ahead addition to a any party or buffet table. Served with cruditiés or crackers, they are really good for feeding a crowd and delicious to eat.

This one is all about smoky and spicy flavours. Smoky cheese, smoked paprika, smoky and spicy chipotle chillies and the crust has chopped smoky almonds, smoked paprika and lots of crispy shards of smoky bacon goodness. Like my first cheese ball recipe, I haven’t used any extra salt in this at all.

cheeseball2

Ingredients:
8oz/226g room temperature cream cheese
8oz/226g room temperature Applewood smoked cheddar, grated
Small bunch of chives, very finely chopped
1-2tbs of chipotle chilli paste.
1 roasted red pepper, skinned and finely chopped. You can easily cheat and use one from a jar for this.
2tsp smoked paprika – sweet or spicy, the choice is yours
Freshly ground black pepper

Crust:
1 pack of salted smoked almonds, very finely chopped
6 thin slices of smoked streaky bacon, cooked until crisp – then cool and finely chop
Freshly ground black pepper
2tsp smoked paprika
Crackers for serving

cheeseball slice

Method:
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, place the room temperature cheeses, peppers, paprika and chilli and mix on low speed until well mixed.  Add the chives and mix until just combined.

Place onto cling film and form into a ball. Refrigerate for at least two hours in order for it to firm up and be rolled in the crust ingredients.

On a plate, spread out the chopped almonds and bacon. Season the plate all over with freshly ground black pepper and sprinkle over the paprika so you have an even coating.

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Then just roll the cheese ball around in the crust ingredients, until fully coated. This is ready to serve immediately but will only get better if left to come up to room temperature. Otherwise you can refrigerate for up to 3 days.

cracker1

This could easily be made vegetarian by leaving out the bacon and using more of the other ingredients to coat the outside.