The good news: all of the “cooking” involved here for this easy appetizer is the preparation of the herb cream cheese spread—and that’s easy, too. Make it in advance so it’s ready to go when it’s time for appetizers.
When you’re ready to serve, set the cream cheese out in a fancy bowl with a platter of smoked salmon, thinly-sliced red onion and other goodness, and bagel chips, then dig in. I’ve made this for brunch, too, as a starter to go with Bloody Marys or mimosas before a main course, like waffles or omelettes.
Wegmans has great bagel chips that my family and I really like. They’re cut from the side of the bagel so they’re longer and more substantial for toppings or for dipping. I’ve also seem full “slices” of bagels from other brands, and New York Style Bagel Crisps, which are another good alternative.
If you have leftover bagels, you can make your own the same way that you would make crostini for bruschetta. Slice a bagel across horizontally into four pieces, spritz both sides with some oil, add salt and pepper, and bake in an oven at 350° F until crisp—it usually doesn’t take long so keep an eye on them.
- 8 oz whipped chive cream cheese
- 3 tbsp fresh parsley roughly chopped
- 3 tbsp fresh dill roughly chopped, plus extra for serving
- 1 scallion chopped
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- 1 tbsp lemon juice from half a lemon
- 1 tbsp heavy cream
- 1/2 tsp each Salt and pepper
- 1 small red onion for serving
- 2 oz bottle capers for serving
- Bagel chips for serving
In a food processor, combine cream cheese, parsley, dill, scallion, lemon zest and juice, heavy cream, and salt and pepper. Blend until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides of the food processor bowl as needed.
Add more heavy cream if the mixture is too thick and salt and pepper, to taste. Blend again until well combined. Scoop until a bowl and chill until ready to serve. (Can be made up to 3 days in advance.)
To serve: Thinly slice half a red onion and cut the smoked salmon pieces in half, if they are large. Build a platter of smoked salmon, red onion, capers, and dill. Add bowl of cream cheese and bagel chips on the side.
To eat: Smear cream cheese on bagel chip and top with salmon and whatever toppings you'd like.