Smoked Salmon in Endive Cups
I’ve been reading a lot of articles lately about being a mom. More specifically, they’ve been about being a mom who isn’t afraid of imperfection. I have to admit that, while the thought of letting go a little is nice, I’m not sure how to get away from the feeling that all I want to be is perfect for my family. I don’t mean that I need to be a perfect human being, but I want life to be something my children and husband look back at and love. That warm love that joy and comfort and laughter and security creates in our hearts. It’s hard to know how to make that a reality when you yourself are still figuring out how to be a “grown-up” without making a total disaster out of everything.
I’ve been pondering this concept a lot lately and I’ve come to this conclusion: if we love- with generosity and joy and genuine acts- we are being as perfect as anyone can hope to be. We are providing a tool for our families, our friends, and our communities that will help them overcome difficult times and celebrate happy ones. Isn’t that all any of us need? Someone who, without a doubt, loves us and does everything possible to make sure we feel that love in the every day moments so that when things get hard- really hard- we know we are not alone?
Perfection is not the goal. But creating an environment of cozy, comforting, lasting love? That is something to strive for.
And no. None of this has anything to do with smoked salmon appetizers. So let me explain the recipe I’m sharing with you today before you think I’ve sent you up the river without a paddle…
This time of year can get away from us. We get caught up in the cookie-baking, gift-wrapping frenzy of it all and forget that in 30 minutes we have to be walking out the door to attend so-and-so’s Christmas cocktail party. And by the way, you’re supposed to bring a dish to share. It happens to the best of us. I know. You don’t have to make excuses in front of me- I’ve been there, too. So, in the spirit of holiday last-minuteness, I bring you the easiest, most elegant appetizer for the holidays. Smoked salmon is mixed with a little sour cream, cream cheese, a few green onions, and some lemon juice before being spooned into beautiful endive leaves. It’s a fresh, flavorful recipe to counter the heavy choices that typically wind up making an appearance at soirees this time of year.
(If you’d like to make it even lighter, add greek yogurt in place of the sour cream.)
These little bites are perfect with the Meyer Lemon Gimlet I posted last week. Click here for the recipe!
To make ahead, prepare the filling and the leaves up to a day in advance. Keep them separate until just before you are ready to serve them. As with any salad, the leaves will get soggy if the filling sits inside them for too long.
- 8 oz smoked salmon
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1/4 cup sour cream (or Greek yogurt)
- 1/8 cup cream cheese
- 2 tablespoons Meyer lemon juice (or 1 tablespoon regular lemon juice)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2-3 heads endive leaves
- Additional scallions for garnish
- Cut the ends off the endive and separate the leaves. Rinse them well and lay out on paper towels to dry.
- While the leaves dry,
- Combine the sour cream, cream cheese, scallions and lemon juice in a medium bowl. Stir to combine.
- Break up the salmon with a fork and fold it into the sour cream mixture.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Using a small spoon, scoop about 2 teaspoons worth of the smoked salmon into the endive leaves.
- Arrange the leaves on a platter and garnish with additional scallions.