Recipe courtesy of Laurie Constantino, adapted from recipe by Chef Joel Chenet, Mill Bay Coffee & Pastries, Kodiak
18 pieces regular sliced bacon, not thick cut
1 cup Smoked Salmon Vodka from Alaska Distillery, plus 2 Tbs divided
1 1/2 lbs skinless salmon fillet
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp cajun spices (any brand, but choose one in which salt is not the first ingredient listed to avoid over-salting)
3/4 cup panko, or any coarse dried white bread crumbs
1/2 cup minced hot smoked salmon (2 oz, about 3 salmon strips) *Smoked salmon is easy to mince in a food processor
8 oz can sliced water chestnuts
Prepare Bacon: Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Stretch bacon slices out on baking sheets with sides. Bake 12 minutes. Remove bacon to paper towels; pat dry to remove excess fat. In bowl or zip lock bag, mix bacon and 1 cup smoked salmon vodka. Marinate bacon in vodka for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Prepare Salmon: Wash salmon and dry it well. Using needle-nosed pliers, remove pin-bones from salmon. Cut salmon into 18 equal pieces (about 1 1/2-2” cubes). Season salmon cubes with salt, freshly ground black pepper, and Cajun spices.
Prepare Breadcrumbs: Mix breadcrumbs and minced smoked salmon together.
Assemble and Bake: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove bacon from vodka marinade, let drain, and pat dry. Lay out bacon slices on work surface. Sprinkle wide end of each bacon slice with layer of salmon breadcrumbs, top with slice of water chestnut, top with seasoned salmon cube. Roll salmon up in bacon. Place salmon rolls on baking sheet with sides. Bake 5 minutes. Using remaining 2 Tbs. smoked salmon vodka, brush top of each salmon roll with vodka. Serve hot.