It’s hard to go wrong with the classic combination of smoked salmon and cream cheese. This riff on the classic uses a beautifully fragrant, locally-sourced goat cheese in place of cream cheese, and Pete’s Own Swedish Salmon Gravlax, which is sliced impossibly thin and is coated in a blend of brown sugar, dill and lemon. To punch up the richness of this dish, heap a pile of quick-pickled asparagus, garlic and red onion on top of the salmon-draped bagel. Just don’t forget your toothbrush for afterward!
1 package St. Vitaeur Montreal-style Bagels
1 package Pete’s Own Swedish Salmon Gravlax
1 tub Ran-Cher Acres Onion Blend Goat Cheese
1 large red onion
1 bunch asparagus
8 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons sugar, divided
2 pinches salt, divided
3 cups white vinegar, divided
Salt and pepper, to taste
Makes 1 jar of pickled asparagus and garlic, 1 jar of pickled red onions, and up to 6 open-face bagels
It is best to prepare the pickled asparagus, garlic and red onion at least an hour in advance, and even better if you can prepare them up to a day in advance. The quick pickles can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
To prepare the pickled onions, slice the red onion into thin rings and steam very briefly – approximately 2 minutes – or until just fork tender, but with a bit of crunch left. Stuff the sliced onion into a 2-cup Mason jar. Sprinkle with 1 of the teaspoons of sugar and a pinch of salt. Pour in 1 cup of the vinegar, and top off the remaining space in the jar with boiling water. Place the lid on the jar and shake. Set aside.
For the pickled asparagus and garlic, cut the woody base of the asparagus stems off, making them short enough to fit into a 1-L Mason jar. Peel the garlic. Steam both the garlic and asparagus very briefly – about 2-3 minutes or until tender but still crunchy. Add the asparagus and garlic to the Mason jar. Sprinkle over the remaining salt and sugar, and 2 cups of the vinegar. Top off the remaining space in the jar with boiling water. As with the onions, place the lid on the jar and shake. Set aside.
When you are ready to eat, toast a bagel and smear with the goat cheese. Top with slices of Swedish gravlax and a heap of pickled asparagus, garlic and red onion. Add salt and pepper, if desired, and enjoy!
Jess hosts the blog The Purple House Cafe. It’s all about taste and good intentions, and the belief that “healthy, wholesome food” is made with love. http://www.purplehousecafe.com