Taking a Moment to Give Thanks
I love my Treager Smoker!
Thanksgiving day is a time to cherish with your loved ones. With the smell of the turkey in the oven, the sweet scent of pies cooking, stuffing and other delicious things filling the air, and your family gathered around to enjoy the fare, Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on what you are grateful for.
This year Kelly and I will be spending Thanksgiving with his family. His siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles and who knows who else will surround us. It will be a fantastic trip and sure, we will stay up to late with cousins, get up way to early to prepare food to feed the masses, play hard (the forecast is for the 60’s), hunt for Christmas trees in the mountains, do some shooting target practice and generally be sleep deprived. I wouldn’t have it any other way, who wouldn’t want to laugh until they cry, smile until their cheeks hurt, eat way too much delicious food (my favorite part) and generally enjoy one another’s company. Yeah, I can hardly wait to get up there and let the fun begin!
We have been so blessed over this past year; we have made new friends and renewed friendships with many of you. We may only see some of you once a year in Elfin Cove but we think of you often and are grateful for your friendship. Our kids continue to grow, 2 of them are now taller than me, and they are all healthy. Kelly & I continue to love and cherish one another, what more could a girl ask for? Thank you to all of you for your love and support.
As you know, I love to cook and if I am hijacking Kelly’s computer, I must have a few thoughts and a recipe to share. Like many of you I have a freezer full of fish and need to figure out something to do with it. The holidays are a perfect time to share some of the bounty from your trip and this Salmon Dip is delicious! I will give you the recipe and then I will tell you what I did because I wanted to use fresh/frozen salmon and honestly, I didn’t have all these ingredients in my kitchen.
Smoked Salmon Dip
1 (8ounce) package of cream cheese, softened
¾ cup Sour Cream
1 TBS Lemon Juice
2 cloves Garlic, minced – this is a lot of garlic, I used 2 for a double batch
2 TBS Green Onion, minced – I substituted finely diced yellow onion
1 TBS fresh Dill, minced – I used dried, same measurement
1 tsp prepared Horseradish
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
1 - (6 to 7 ounce) can smoked salmon drained
Beat the cream cheese until smooth.
Add the sour cream, lemon juice, garlic, green onions, dill, horseradish, salt and pepper. Mix well.
Gently add the smoked salmon. Chill and serve with crackers.
The Momma Mary method:
I doubled the batch because I wanted to make the smoked salmon dip and then turn some of it into a Salmon Cheese Ball.
I used 2 packages of salmon, about a pound. This recipe will tolerate a lot of salmon, I wish I had done 3 packages for my double batch, so add all you want! Prepare the salmon by seasoning with granulated garlic, salt and cracked pepper. Baked the salmon in a 375-degree oven for about 20 minutes. Let the salmon cool completely…I will warn you, hide it…I couldn’t keep my family out of it! (maybe that is why I wished I had more to add…hmmm)
While the salmon is cooling, beat the cream cheese until smooth and then add the ingredients 2-9. Now, since you are using fresh salmon you will need to add liquid smoke. A LITTLE GOES A LONG WAY and you can always add more. I added 4 slow shakes from my bottle per batch (remember I doubled my recipe so I started with 8 slow shakes).
Once the salmon was cooled, and half eaten by my kids (okay maybe not ½ eaten) I added it to the mixture. I carefully added it so it would have big chunks. What I found is I would get mostly the taste of the cream cheese mixture and a little bit of salmon, so I put it in my mixer and let it do it’s magic…much better texture and salmon throughout.
Now for the taste test. It was a good but a little flat. I added more salt and pepper to taste and a couple more shots of liquid smoke. I mixed it again, repeated this last step once again and then decided it was just how I liked it. I kept it at a very mild smoky flavor but that is really whatever you prefer. I knew I had it right because the kids where fighting over it. (Paige just saw the picture above and asked if she could have some more...maybe I will have to make more for Thanksgiving?)
Since I wanted dip and a salmon ball I took about 1/3 of the mixture and added shredded cheese to it. I would guess 1 - 1 ½ cups, I added some, mixed and added more until it was a nice texture and held it’s shape. This recipe tolerates the monkeying and mixing very well. Before I could get the ball on the plate for the picture the kids had ¼ of it gone. I guess it will do, it is now a cute little cheese ball…
This recipe will wow your taste buds and the people in your life. Don’t forget to stock up on crackers and have a Happy Thanksgiving!