Cucumber rounds make great bases for toppings. Ideally use Lebanese cucumbers (the smaller ones that are usually wrapped) as the skin on these is more easily digested. Or peel the larger cucumbers. Some people have difficulty digesting regular cucumber skin.
Here are some ideas for topping the cucumber rounds:
- Cream cheese with a small piece of smoked salmon on top
- Blend cream cheese with smoked salmon, place on the cucumber base and then top with either a tiny piece of smoked salmon or a thin strip of red capsicum
- Cream cheese with a cooked prawn on top
- Broad bean and pea topping – from Regal Salmon website: http://www.regalsalmon.co.nz/recipes/kellys-cucumber-rounds-w-smoked-regal-salmon-crushed-herby-broadbeans
- Or you can make a minty pea topping if you want to omit the broadbeans
General Platter Ideas
- Make an avocado dip using ingredients of choice – sour cream, lime/lemon juice, salsa/sweet chilli, salt and pepper. Play around with quantities, more avo than sour cream and the lime or lemon juice is essential to stop the dip discolouring.
- You can then wipe button mushrooms and stuff them with the avocado dip and place a small piece of crispy cooked bacon or perhaps thinly sliced capsicum on top.
- Asparagus is great for platters. Very lightly cook the asparagus first, until still crisp and plunge into cold water to stop it cooking further. With the cooked asparagus you can wrap prosciutto around it and grill or BBQ it, or you can just lay the lightly blanched asparagus on the platter as is and it can be used as a ‘dipper’.
- Ham, cream cheese and gherkin rolls. Lay thin slices of ham flat, spread with cream cheese, cut gherkins long wise into 4-6 slices, depending on the size of the gherkin. Lay a slice of gherkin on the cream cheese and then roll it up. Use 2-3 toothpicks, placed in line with where you want to cut the rolls. Slice into two or three rolls, depending on the size of the ham slice.
- Or mash hardboiled eggs with mayo, salt and pepper, and a little bit of curry powder and/or parsley, spread on slices of ham, then cut into rolls. Make sure the egg mixture is nice and sticky so it doesn’t drop out!
- Make mini skewers (the $2 shops sell cute little mini skewers with ties on top which look great) with items like halved cherry tomatoes, feta, basil leaves, small chunks of hard cheese, pieces of salami, etc
- Make mini meatballs, place on skewers and serve with Simon Gault’s ketchup, or a dipping sauce.
- Roasted radish (green stalk on, leaves off) is popular on platters now
- Different varieties of olives, with toothpicks handy to spear them
- Cream cheese stuffed baby red capsicum. You can buy these at the deli.
- Cherry tomatoes on their own
- Peel, (peeled) cucumber thinly long wise and roll up with cream cheese, smoked salmon and a small sprig of dill, toothpick to close.
Sweet Tooth Platter
- Nuts of various kinds – have spoons handy rather than hands getting into the nuts
- Pieces of dark chocolate, with small tongs handy to pick them up
- Almonds half dipped in melted dark chocolate
- Big strawberries on their own
- Big strawberries sliced long wise with a piece of camembert inserted (don’t slice right through!)
- Strawberries dipped in melted chocolate
- Strawberries dipped in dark chocolate and then put melted white chocolate in a plastic bag, cut off the corner to use as a piping bag and pipe white chocolate lines around and over the (set) dark chocolate, or in reverse.