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Cream cheese flecked with herbs and smoked salmon is rolled in everything bagel seasoning for a spread that tastes like a bagel sandwich (minus the carbs).
As much as I love the summer (and I love the summer), it’s also a time when I go into a little friend withdrawal. We’re all running in different directions between travel, camp, and sports, and it seems like before we know it, we’re seeing each other in the school supply aisle of Target and planning drinks post back-to-school-night. But the fall schedule is more than just crazy weekdays and school shopping. It’s about weekends spent around the firepit, football games and catching up.
Since we moved to New Jersey what sometimes feels like a hundred years ago, we’ve established a network of good friends that feel more like family. I’m lucky enough to live near my close college friends and nothing makes me happier than seeing our kids form their own special bonds. And I have my kids to thank for introducing us to a fun crew of families that go back to preschool and chatting on the elementary school blacktop.
So now that we’re all back and tethered to our town on the weekends thanks to our kids’ sports and activities, we have some time to get together and reconnect. For the kids, it’s running around the yard, playing Ghosts in the Graveyard, and sneaking sweets out of the candy jar. For the guys it’s drinking out of their team mugs and taking turns nodding off while watching the football games. For the ladies, it’s yammering around the kitchen island, occasionally puzzling and usually sipping wine.
If it is our turn to host, I gravitate towards comfort food and game day fare like white chicken chili, sausage rolls or buffalo cauliflower bites. But sometimes a brunch is better fit for the day and that means bagels, mimosas and citrus salad. A tasty addition to the brunch menu is this everything bagel smoked salmon and cream cheese ball. Okay, I know that’s a mouthful, but each word is key to the description.
I’m partial to everything bagels, so I love this seasoning blend that tastes just like my favorite bagel, minus the carbs. I mix up a cream cheese spread with chunks of smoked salmon, fresh herbs and lemon and roll it in the everything bagel seasoning. It can be served alongside fresh bagels, bagel crisps, pumpernickel squares or fresh vegetables. It’s make ahead, looks pretty on a platter, and works for lunch or an appetizer spread.
So along with crisp weather and shorter days, I’m easing back into our fall groove of weekend get-togethers. Sometimes football, usually a fire, and always plenty of food and good friends.
- 3 Tbsp sesame seeds
- 2 Tbsp poppy seeds
- 1 Tbsp dried onion flakes
- 1 Tbsp dried minced garlic
- 2 tsp sea salt
- 16 oz cream cheese, softened
- 4 oz smoked salmon
- 1 tsp prepared horseradish
- 2 tsp grated lemon zest
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp fresh dill minced
- 1 Tbsp fresh chives minced
Stir all ingredients together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Combine all ingredients in a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process just until combined (alternatively beat together with the paddle attachment of a kitchen mixer).
Scrape salmon spread onto a large sheet of plastic wrap, cover and form into a ball. Refrigerate until set, about 30 mins to an hour.
Roll the chilled salmon ball in the everything bagel seasoning until well coated. Serve with bagels, bagel chips or pumpernickel squares, sliced tomato, capers, and red onion.