Food Recipe Salmon Sandwiches

Boat Food – Simple snacks to eat on the go

One of the many benefits of living the in wonderful Pacific Northwest is the  scarcity of summer days marred by the unbearable heat characteristic to other areas of the country. I  spend the majority of my school break in shorts and a t-shirt, enjoying pleasant sunshine and temperatures in the mid-80’s. But every so often, the temperatures will spike, forcing the unprepared denizens of the greater Seattle area to awkwardly remove their shirts (while still wearing jeans, for some reason), switch to iced-lattes, buy COSTCO out of all of their otherwise untouched window-mounted AC units, and (ultimately) get tangentially invited to spend an afternoon on their brother-in-law’s friend’s super-nice boat.

Note: That last one might not apply to the entire population of the area, but the first three are universal certainties.

While many a King-County denizen might accept such an invitation, they would do so ironically, wear their Ray-Bans (the ugliest fucking sunglasses ever invented) and skinny-jeans on the boat and refuse to swim, my wife and I did so wholeheartedly, and – of course – offered to bring snacks.

My first inclination was to bring chips. I LOVE chips. But that seemed… pedestrian.

We were – after all – being given a special treat. So I felt that I had to reciprocate.

Boats present their own special set of problems when it comes to snacking. The food needs to be portable, and individually portioned. It needs to be easy to consume without utensils or plates, and it needs to be crowd-pleasing. Of course, as per my own standards, it also needs to taste good, and be a unique experience for the audience. In our particular case, it also needed to be hearty enough to be considered dinner.

So I set to work planning a menu.

Normal sandwiches? BORING

Pasta salad? TOO MESSY


Chips? PEDES…. yeah, I’ll buy some chips to bring along. I love chips.

Food on a stick? THERE WE GO!

After concluding that toothpick-borne bites would be my best option, I landed on the following three snacks:

  • Caprese bites
  • Deli wraps
  • Smoked-salmon cucumber rolls

After a stint in the kitchen skewering marinated mushrooms, layering deli-meats, and peeling cucumbers, we headed down to the lake and shared the afternoon, and my snacks, with great success!

Caprese Bites:

  • 6 oz. fresh mozzarella – cubed
  • 25 (or so) fresh basil leaves – wrapped around the mozzarella cubes
  • 1 Columbus peppered salami – cubed
  • 1 package cherry tomatoes
  • 8 oz. Italian-marinated mushrooms
  • Toothpicks

To make the bites, skewer three of the above-listed ingredients onto each toothpick in various, alternating configurations. The random variations allow people to pick through and finds the ones they want, and with so many options there’s bound to be something for everyone.

Meat, cheese, etc.
Meat, cheese, etc.


  • Sun-Dried Tomato and Spinach-flavored sandwich wraps
  • 1/2 lb deli roast beef
  • 1/2 lb deli bbq chicken
  • 1 avocado
  • 1/4 lb sliced smoked gouda
  • 1/4 lb sliced horseradish cheddar
  • mixed greens
  • mayo
  • hummus
Sliced and ready to travel
Sliced and ready to travel

I made two wraps, one with a tomato wrap, chicken, gouda, avocado, greens and hummus, and a second with a spinach wrap, beef, cheddar, mayo, avocado and greens. I rolled them up, pinned them every two inches with toothpicks, and sliced them into finger-sized bites.

Ready to go!
Ready to go!

Smoked-salmon cucumber rolls:

  • 2 cucumbers
  • 1 tub (6 oz.) whipped cream cheese
  • 3 green onions – chopped fine
  • 1 small bunch of chives – chopped fine
  • 5 0z. smoked salmon


To make the filling, chop the green onions and chives, and flake the fish into a medium bowl. Fold the cream cheese together with these ingredients, until the mixture is uniformly blended.

Slice thin strips of cucumber (I used a mandolin) with the peel on.

Spoon a dab of the salmon mixture onto the end of each strip of cuke, and gently roll it until you can pin it into a tube with a toothpick.

Delicate little morsels
Delicate little morsels

These three treats were a hit all-around, were portable and clean enough so as not to leave the boat (or ourselves) a mess, and hearty enough to serve as dinner!

Enjoy… and happy boating! 🙂


  1. As I’ve mentioned and I think you know, my Mom is a pretty good cook but I have to say she never made snacks like this for our countless boat weekends growing up. Although, she did bake a cake once on the boat and that was pretty impressive! Don’t worry, once we get a boat, I’ll invite you and the Mrs. along (obviously) and you can be responsible for the snacks 😉

  2. I love the three universal certainties and I absolutely adore chips too! Your food on a stick looks wonderful. You spiced our caprese up with the addition of some salame and mushrooms and your salmon rolls look amazing. Even I’m tempted! And I don’t eat fish!

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