Creamy spicy cheese fills these cucumber shrimp cups, topped with perky shrimp for the perfect game day appetizer or cocktail party fare.
Many years ago my cousin was invited to a hunting camp for the weekend. Everyone was bringing food to share so she made her deliciously creamy cheesy hot spinach dip. Much ridicule ensued because, apparently, spinach dip is too frou-frou for a weekend at a hunting camp. That story popped into my mind when I decided to fashion cups from cucumbers and fill them with spicy creamy cheese topped with shrimp. Are these too fancy for football food?
Here’s the honest truth. I do enjoy watching football, both the American and rest-of-the-world variety, which is to say, soccer. But if you are inviting me over to watch a special game or you are coming over to my house to do the same, the food is going to be my main priority. Well, and making sure we’ve got enough cold beer, wine and soft drinks. I am of the firm opinion that no food is too fancy for football food. My only requirements are that it is tasty and easy to eat. If it’s spicy, that’s a big bonus. My family love spicy. These cucumber shrimp cups qualify in all three categories.
- 24 shrimp
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 8 oz cream cheese softened
- 1/3 cup feta
- 1 tablespoon fresh fennel minced
- 1 tablespoon green onion chopped
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 tbsp hot red chili peppers minced
- 4 cucumbers
Peel and clean your shrimp, leaving the tail end on.
Bring a pot of 4 cups or 960ml water with one teaspoon of salt to the boil.
Add in the shrimp and remove the pot from the heat.
Leave to rest for 3-4 minutes or until the shrimp are have turned pink.
Drain the pot and rinse the shrimp with cold water.
Put in the refrigerator to drain with the colander over a bowl to catch any dripping.
Stir together softened cream cheese, feta, fennel, chopped fresh chives, fresh lemon juice, and salt. If it's too thick for a piping bag or to squeeze out of a plastic bag with the corner cut off, add a couple of tablespoons of warm water, mixing well between each addition.
Cut cucumbers into 24 1/2 in or 2 cm slices, discarding the rounded ends.
Using a melon baller or small spoon to scoop the seeds from centers of the cucumber slices, being careful not to cut all the way through the bottom.
Use a plastic bag with a corner cut off or a piping bag and tip to overfill the cucumber cups with the spicy cheese.
Top each with a cold boiled shrimp.
Add extra chili slices and chopped fennel fronds for garnish, if desired.
You can substitute dill for the fennel fronds if you prefer. I am not a fan of dill but I love fennel.
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