So this recipe was inspired by a delicious appetizer that we had for brunch at The Penthouse restaurant, in the Huntley Hotel, during a girl’s trip to Santa Monica, California.
Can you believe that when I got home from this trip, out of all the good food I ate and was inspired by, the first thing I wanted to make was pickled red onion? Kind of weird, but I knew I wanted to dupe this smoked salmon appetizer, and thought it would be good to have some pickled red onion on hand (especially since I’m not sure where I could find it in a store).
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The appetizer from The Penthouse’s brunch was actually a little more complicated than what I did, but I have to say that my version turned out pretty delicious too. Their app was called “Smoked Salmon Tartine,” and it consisted of the Smoked Salmon on Sourdough, with Creme Fraiche, Cucumber, Dill, Avocado, Capers, Radishes, Sweet Peppers, and Pickled Red Onion.
I simplified that quite a bit by making an herbed cream cheese, and topping some toasted rye bread with that, smoked salmon, red onion, and some green onion for a garnish. I will definitely make it again with some avocado on it as well.
When I decided to finally make this, I did not go back initially to the restaurant’s menu to see what their app consisted of. However, after going back to compare my appetizer with theirs, I might have to try this again with some cucumber and sweet peppers too.
For the Cream Cheese:
- 8 oz. Cream Cheese (room temperature)
- 1/8 Cup Chopped Green Onion
- 2 Cloves Crushed Garlic
- Smoked Paprika (a couple sprinkles)
- Fresh Ground Black Pepper to taste
- Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl until well incorporated.
- Put cream cheese mixture in a tupperware for storage, or in an icing bag if you want to get fancy with the application of the cream cheese on your toast.
I recently went into town to go to a Whole Foods to get some organic garlic to plant in my garden for a fall/winter crop (fingers crossed I will have a bunch of garlic this spring!). While I was there I decided to pick up a loaf of their fresh Jewish Rye Bread and some Wild Atlantic Smoked Salmon because I was ready to finally break into those pickled red onions.
For the Toast:
- Smoked Salmon
- Herbed Cream Cheese (see above)
- Artesian bread of your choice, or crackers/melba toast
- Pickled Red Onion
- Green Onion/Chives (for garnish)
- Avocado (or other toppings of choice)
- Slice bread thin so it will get nice and crunchy when toasted.
- Baste a little melted butter (or olive oil) on the bread prior to toasting.
- Toast bread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper at 350 degrees until toast is golden brown. Flip toast once to make sure toast is getting crispy on both sides.
- To assemble the toast, grab a piece of toast then layer with some cream cheese, smoked salmon, and then your pickled red onion. Garnish with more chopped green onion/chives.
This recipe will be great to try this upcoming holiday season, or at your next get together. It is so easy to throw together, tastes great, and looks fancy.
Here is the PDF version if you would like to print it out.
Serve your appetizers on a beautiful charcuterie board
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