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Smoked Salmon Puff Pastry Bites CLINTON KELLY

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A tasty little snack in every bite!

1 package puff pastry sheets (thawed, 1 sheet)
1 large egg
1 tablespoon water
1 8- ounce package cream cheese
1 4- ounce package smoked salmon
2 tablespoons dill (plus more fronds to garnish)
2 teaspoons lemon zest
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)

Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Using a 1-inch biscuit cutter, cut 16 rounds out of one sheet of thawed puff pastry and arrange on prepared baking sheet.
Punch out 16 1-inch rounds of the second sheet of puff pastry and using a 1/2-inch biscuit cutter, (or the bottom of the handle of a whisk) punch out the middle of the puff pastry rounds, creating rings.
In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and water. Using a pastry brush, coat the 16 rounds on the baking sheet with the egg wash. Top each round with one ring and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 2 minutes uncovered. Once the rounds have slightly puffed up place another baking sheet on top of the rounds to help keep them uniform. Bake until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Meanwhile, make the filling.
In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment, add the cream cheese, smoked salmon, dill, lemon zest, salt and pepper and blend until smooth and creamy.
Remove the filling to a piping bag fitted with a star tip. Pipe the filling into the bottom of the puff pastry bowls and garnish with a dill frond.
Tip: Get creative! Stir your favorite flavors to the cream cheese for a truly unique party treat!

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