I had a couple of small left over blackened salmon fillets. I thought shredded within some soft cheese, they would make a nice spread for an addition to “Winers” night eats last weekend.
I grabbed a number of ingredients that I had on hand and realized I didn’t have cream cheese, rather two blocks of low-fat Neufchâtel. Though I use it often, I’ve wondered what’s the difference between Cream Cheese and Neufchâtel. Basically to me, they taste almost the same. I believe if one was to taste the two side-by-side, most would never know the difference. Both are dense, milky, slightly tangy, and spreadable when left out to soften. Most of us know the flavor of cream cheese quite well, but I think Neufchâtel is slightly less rich tasting. According to the New Food Lover’s Companion, on paper, the main distinction between the two cheeses is their fat content: While cream cheese by law must contain at least 33% milk fat and not more than 55% moisture, American Neufchâtel weighs in with about 23% milk fat and slightly higher moisture content.
The fact that I used the lower fat ingredients, doesn’t mean it compromised any flavor. We enjoyed this as a spread on crackers, but also enjoyed it the next day spread in a low-fat, low-calorie spinach tortilla along with fresh lettuce. The bright lemon went well with the salmon and the pecans adds nice crunch! It is an easy and delicious way to use up some left over salmon that you have on hand!
1 package Neufchâtel, softened to room temperature
6-8 oz. Cooked Blackened Salmon, shredded with a fork
1/3 Cup Sour Cream, low-fat
1/2 Large Shallot, grated
1/3 Lemon, juice and rind
2 Tablespoons Horseradish Mustard
1 Tablespoon Liquid Smoke, or to your taste
Salt & Pepper, a dash to taste
1/2 Cup Pecans, roasted and salted chopped
Mix all of the ingredients except the salmon and pecans until blended.
Fold in the flaked fish and stir gently. Serve spread out on a small plate or in a bowl topped with chopped pecans. Chill and Enjoy!