A few days ago, I needed to go to Rex’s Seafood to ask a few questions about their hot smoked salmon. I wondered how I could also turn a chunk of their delicious salmon into dinner. The short answer is, “Unwrap it and eat it, dummy.” It is that good. You don’t need to do anything to it or with it. Yet, I found another way to use it that suited my family quite well.
That is what I do when the world is spinning quickly; I rely on help from really wonderful prepared foods. I love cold smoked salmon. And, I love hot smoked salmon. The difference, in a tiny nutshell, is that one is smoked at cold temperatures (or without heat…just smoke) and one is smoked at hot temperatures. The result is that one type looks raw (cold smoked) and one looks cooked (hot smoked). Both are smoked, and both are great. I’ve eaten a lot of cold smoked salmon lately and I wanted to jump over to hot smoked. I need to learn how to hot smoke salmon myself. It appears to be a simple matter. However, in the meantime, if you have a shop that makes great hot smoked salmon, you can rely on them for a quick meal or a stunning appetizer spread.
Let me clarify something, though. Here, the cooking method is “hot smoked” but I serve it cool or at room temperature. The hot does not imply that it is spicy or that it is served hot. “Hot” is an indication that it was cooked with heat and smoke, as opposed to merely being exposed to smoke. Not that it is that simple. There is curing and spices involved with both methods. But you get my point, right? Get it, got it? Good!
I simply broiled slices of baguette. Then I whipped up a little sauce that is quite reminiscent of this Mustard Tarragon Salmon recipe sauce. Try my Homemade Whole Grain Mustard recipe from a few months back for the sauce. And, be sure to buy some local honey. I served little bits of hot smoked salmon on the toasted baguette on which I had put a dollop of the sauce. It couldn’t be simpler. Get to know your smoked salmon options. Give the rotisserie chicken a rest for emergency meals, and try salmon. It is a treat all by itself, and mildly gussied up…it is a feast.
½ cup sour cream
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard (try this homemade mustard recipe)
2 tablespoons local honey
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
7 to 8 ounce piece of hot smoked salmon, divided into 12 chunks
1. In a small bowl, combine the sour cream, mustard, honey and tarragon. Mix well and place in the refrigerator until you are ready to prepare the toast. At least 30 minutes before serving, remove the sauce from the refrigerator so that it can come closer to room temperature.
2. Set out the piece of salmon to come to near room temperature.
3. Preheat broiler to high. Slice the baguette so that you have 12 (1/3” thick) slices and lay them on a baking sheet. Place the baking sheet on the middle rack of the oven and cook for 1 minute per side or until just golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
4. Place a dollop of the cream sauce on each slice of toasted baguette. Divide the salmon into 12 pieces and place a piece of salmon on each baguette. Serve immediately.
Note: Serve this as an appetizer or serve this with a salad and call it dinner!