Countless women around the world love babies but dread the awkward games and endless ceremonious unwrapping of car seat paraphernalia and breast pump accessories that accompany baby showers. This past weekend, my roommate and I successfully escaped the cliche and hosted a small gathering which fused the traditional English tea with a simple family gathering to create a wonderfully enjoyable and casual event in anticipation of the new little one, fondly called “Critter” until the delivery day.
Amongst scones, punch, lemonade and cupcakes, the cucumber sandwiches were a hit. Why? (You might ask of a snack that is typically quite bland.) This wasn’t just any cucumber and cream cheese slapped on Wonder Bread. I took some time to dress up the spread which, to my delight, proved to be a bit addictive to our guests in attendance.
Serves approximately 10 guests.
2 large cucumbers, peeled and (very) thinly sliced
2 packets of Neufchatel cheese, room temperature
½ cup of fresh dill
4 tbsp Greek yogurt
1 loaf Pullman bread
1 large clove of garlic, pressed or crushed thoroughly
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp paprika
¼ tsp sea salt, ground
In a medium-sized bowl, combine crushed garlic and olive oil. Place Neufchatel cheese and Greek yogurt in the same bowl and stir until Neufchatel is softened.
Use an immersion blender to combine the ingredients to build a whipped consistency. Gradually add fresh dill, paprika and sea salt while blending. Add more dill to flavor if preferred.
Once finished, spread generously on each slice of the Pullman loaf. Assemble the sandwiches with the spread on both pieces and a thin layer of cucumber in the middle. Slice the edges off each sandwich and quarter for presentation. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 2 hours. (Eat the edges. I won’t judge.)