Posted by: Grub | December 3, 2009

THE Appetizer

So, I think that pretty much everyone has an appetizer in their repertoire that they are known for and could make in their sleep, and that gets requested for just about every function they go to.  Well, this one just might become mine!

I made these for Book Club this past weekend (or should I say, BookTACular), and had several requests for the recipe, so thought I would post it.   Full disclosure:  this is actually a fairly serious makeover of my friend David’s Smoked Salmon Baguettes.  I used to quite enjoy the Smoked Salmon Baguettes back in our Totem Park days, and so this has been on my list of recipes to play around with and make my own.  This picture is actually the leftovers on half of a whole wheat bun, but as you can see in the photo further down the page, the originals were made on sliced baguette. 

Best. Leftovers. Ever.

The substitutions were pretty easy – I used roasted sweet orange pepper to replace the salmon and homemade “goat cheese” spread to replace the cream cheese and then whipped up a quick vegan substitution for Dijonnaise (I’m not even sure what is in Dijonnaise, so I guessed!)  I love how much the appetizer looks exactly like I remember – the texture of the roasted pepper is even similar – and the key tastes are all still there! 

The plated baguettes, before they disappeared!

Although the goat cheese spread is delicious, it is also time-consuming (including overnight soaking of the cashews) and I have found it a bit finicky, so you could easily substitute vegan cream cheese (Tofutti is my favourite).  I also would add a sprinking of smoked salt on top of the pepper layer next time – I can’ t believe I didn’t think of this the first time around.  Here is the recipe that I used:

Cheezy Roasted Pepper, Sweet Onion and Dill Baguettes

3 medium orange sweet peppers
grapeseed or olive oil for brushing
1 1/2 tbsp Vegennaise or other vegan mayo
1 generous tsp Dijon mustard
about 1/2 tsp of agave nectar or other liquid sweetener
3 tbsp chopped fresh dill
3 tbsp capers, drained
1 tbsp lemon juice
3/4 cup very finely chopped sweet onion
one baguette
one recipe Pepper-Crusted Cashew Goat Cheese (or 8 oz. vegan cream cheese)
smoked salt, to taste

Preheat the oven to 425F.  Cut the peppers in half lengthwise and remove the stem and seeds.  Brush the cut sides lightly with the oil, place them face down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and brush the outsides of the peppers lightly with oil.  Roast the peppers for 20 to 30 minutes, until the skin is dark brown in spots.  Immediately transfer the roasted peppers to a bowl and cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap.  Let the peppers cool, remove the plastic wrap and then remove the skin, which should come off quite easily. 

While the peppers are cooling, prepare the topping.  First, in a medium bowl, mix together the vegan mayo, Dijon and agave, and then taste to see if it tastes like “Dijonnaise” sounds like it should taste like!  (If not, add more of any of the three ingredients to your taste – I typically err on the same of extra creamy, but you could also go extra tangy or extra sweet). Then add the dill, capers, lemon juice and onion and stir gently just to mix.  Refrigerate for a bit to chill.

Slice the baguette diagonally.  Spread a layer of the cheese on each baguette, and top with slices of the roasted pepper, a sprinkling of smoked salt if you wish, and then with a few spoonfuls of the onion topping.  Serve!

I know I am supposed to be posting about Prague – I promise a Prague post next time!



  1. […] can also check out the football shake and the roasted pepper appetizer at these previous […]

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