Apr 8, 2010

Dad's Salmon Cakes

When we'd get sick of eating fish as kids, dad could always persuade us with these delicious, crispy, fried  fish-and-potato patties.  Now that I've grown to appreciate the wild-caught fish I grew up eating, I think these salmon cakes are pretty special.  They're easy to make and taste great warm or cold - the Panko crust retains its crunch even after refrigeration.  They make a great appetizer or main course.  You could even throw one on a bun and call it a salmon po' boy!  

I made a ginger mango chutney here - just 'cause it looks pretty in a photo.  Sometimes I make a kind of tartar sauce by blending a little lemon juice and a lot of herbs into mayonnaise.  But to be perfectly honest, I prefer my dad's salmon cakes cold, with no condiments whatsoever.  [I can't believe I just said that.  I usually pile every sauce available on whatever I'm eating.]    

This recipe makes about a dozen salmon cakes
Dad’s Salmon Cakes:
1 cup coarsely mashed potatoes
2 cups cooked salmon or steelhead, cooled and flaked
1/4 cup chopped green onion (parsley and dill are other good herbs for this recipe)
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
about 2 cups Panko bread crumbs
canola oil for frying the salmon cakes

Boil and peel potatoes.  Mash, leaving slightly chunky and let cool to room temperature.

Salt and pepper salmon and bake at 350 for 20 minutes.  Cool to room temperature.  Remove bones and break into flakes.  

Chop green onions and set aside.

Beat two eggs in large mixing bowl.  Add mashed potatoes, salmon, green onions, salt and pepper.  Loosely combine by folding together. 

Place mixture in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.  This step will make it easier to form patties.  

Spread Panko bread crumbs on a large plate. 

Form patties and lightly press each side into the Panko.

Pour about a quarter of an inch of oil into a skillet and heat to medium.    

Fry salmon cakes about 5 minutes on each side, or until a deep golden brown. 

Drain and cool on paper towels.

I usually use green onion, but I had parsley on hand and didn't want to make another trip to the grocery store.  

Beat the eggs, then mix everything together.  

Refrigerating the salmon mix will help the patties hold together while you're shaping them.

After about an hour in the fridge, form patties.  

Pour Panko onto a plate and press the patties into the Panko.

Panko covered salmon cakes ready to fry!

I used less than a quarter of an inch of canola oil for frying.  On medium heat.  Everything but the egg is already cooked, so it doesn't require high heat to fry these.  

Turn 'em over when they look like this.  

Drain and cool the salmon cakes on paper towels.

I took a platter of cold steelhead cakes to a dinner party as an appetizer.  My dad was right, they were a hit!

Sometimes I make a sauce for salmon by blending fresh dill and parsley with a little lemon juice and some mayo.  I couldn't find fresh dill that day, so I used dried.  

Herbed lemon mayo for salmon cakes - or just about any fish.

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