Robin Donovan and Juliana Gallin are the authors of The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy—a hip, fun, and practical guide to cooking strikingly sophisticated, yet surprisingly simple dishes. You can visit the authors’ blog at www.twolazygourmets.com, like them on Facebook, and follow them on Twitter.
One of our favorite appetizers from The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy is our version of the Scandinavian open-faced sandwich (smørrebrød, smørbrød, and smörgås to the Danes, Norwegians, and Swedes). Smörgås are a diverse and adaptable traditional dish that look beautiful and are easy to make. Simply butter a piece of hearty dark bread and pile it neatly with your favorite meat, fish, vegetables, cheese, eggs, herbs or whatever else you fancy. Cocktail-sized, sliced pumpernickel loaves are available at many supermarkets and delis—but if you can’t find them, just get a large square loaf and cut four slices into quarters. You can also use crispy rye crackerbreads made by companies like Kavli or Wasa. We love to serve smörgås for brunch, lunch or as an appetizer.
Smoked Herring Smörgås make great appetizers and complement small meals.
Photo courtesy Two Lazy Gourmets
Smoked Herring Smörgås
From The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy (Viva Editions, 2011)
MAKES 16 MINI-SANDWICHES
• 16 cocktail-sized (about 2 1/2-inch square) slices of pumpernickel bread
• 3 to 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
• 16 large cucumber slices
• 4 hard-boiled eggs, sliced
• Kosher salt to taste
• Freshly ground black pepper to taste
• One 7-ounce can smoked herring fillets, cut into 1-inch squares about 1/4-inch thick
• 1 to 2 large sprigs of fresh dill
1. Generously butter each piece of bread.
2. Stack a slice of cucumber, a slice of egg (from the middle of the egg, so it includes some yolk), and a piece of fish onto the buttered bread.
3. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste and top with a pinch or two of dill.