my friend nadja is celebrating her return to the wonderful world of fish tonight as she converts from vegetarianism to pescatarianism, so i decided to make savory smoked salmon cupcakes for the occasion. inspired by the gina moon meat cookies from last year, i’ve been on a sweet/savory, meat/dessert fusion trend recently. for gina’s birthday, i made a five cheese truffle macaroni and bacon kittycat cake, which i realize sounds weird until you consider the rest of the presents gina got. lets just say that every single item was cat-related, except for the dinosaur chia pet and the one that involved human hair (loooong story).
the facial features are apple cinnamon smoked bacon and cured olives. yum. this meat dessert fusion worked better than the sweet corn maple bacon cupcakes that irene bean and i made a few weeks ago. it’s one thing if the fully savory item LOOKS like dessert, but apparently its another for dessert items to TASTE like meat. that, or my friends are just pussies. (meow!) anyway, i’m reverting back to the savory-dish-that-looks-like-dessert for these cupcakes, which i have to admit i didn’t come up with by myself. i saw a picture of salmon cupcakes once, but i can’t remember where, which made it difficult to find a recipe. so i did some googling and cracked open the trusty ‘how to cook everything’ and combined a bittman savory muffin recipe with a savory rosemary and chevre cupcake from always order dessert.
i added in some whipped cream cheese, creme fraiche we had in the fridge, and scallions and they turned out surprisingly delicious. it’s sort of a popover/biscuit/really light muffin and then i added a creme fraiche/whipped cream cheese ‘frosting’ and a smoked salmon garnish. considering my guerilla baking tendency to not follow directions and just add whatever i want to a recipe, i was psyched when they turned out not only edible, but even somewhat attractive. and according to everyone at dinner, actually delicious.
here’s the recipe as it ended up. if i did it again i’d add more cream cheese, since a few of the cupcakes ended up with delicious chunks of cream cheese hidden inside. i’d probably also use straight up philadelphia cream cheese for the frosting, since i just got lucky that the whipped cream cheese plus creme fraiche gave the perfect frosting consistency. i’d also get better, thinner sliced salmon to more easily shape into bizarre fish flowers. thanks to ‘always order dessert’ for giving me a jumpoff point…