Punting! with Salmon Cakes

If yesterday’s butter churning wasn’t proof positive that the Practical Cook is secretly a Depression-Era cook trapped in an interweb-loving body, let me confirm that today. The pantry confessional is wide open—I love salmon cakes. I love using canned salmon to make them. I love stretching the recipe with a variety of items. If you think you’re a hater, read on. This recipe is for you.

The salmon cake recipe is ever evolving, because I don’t know what I’ll have on hand. But I’ve found some tricks to make it crispy and more palatable for fish-haters, which include the Senior Practical Cook Junior. (She can wield chopsticks like a pro, will eat pickled jalepeños on a spinach quesadilla, but hates salmon. Go figure.) She eats these.

Punting! with Salmon Cakes Recipe

I give real measurements here, with lots of alternatives. The point is to stretch your can of salmon, make it flavorful, and make it crunchy. What happens between the start and the finish is up to you.

1 can (14 3/4 oz, the big one) canned salmon, bones and skin removed, and flaked
1/4 cup mayo
1 generous teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs, or 1/4 – 1/3 cup mashed potatoes, or 1/4 block extra-firm tofu, crumbled, or 1/4 cup rolled oats (something starchy and stretchy)
1/4 cup chopped green onions, or 1 bulb chopped green garlic, or 1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon seasoned salt (I’ve used Lawry’s, Old Bay, Tony Chechere, and Mrs. Dash, go crazy)
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs or Panko (for rolling the finished cakes in for frying)
1 Tablespoon fat for frying (bacon grease, olive oil, butter, combo, suit yourself)

1. In a medium bowl, combine everything up to and including the seasoned salt. Mix completely with a spoon, but leave some texture. Don’t pulverize.

Tofu-Salmon Cakes--Why Not?

Tofu-Salmon Cakes--Why Not?

2. Put the remaining 1/4 cup crumbs on a piece of waxed paper or a plate. Form the salmon mixture into patties (you can decide how many, how thick, etc., depending on your preferred ratio of moist:crisp). Press the patties into the crumbs on both sides, and let them sit while you heat the pan.

Salmon Cakes, Patty Formed, Bread Crumbs Applied

Salmon Cakes, Patty Formed, Bread Crumbs Applied

3. Heat fat in a skillet over a strong medium heat. When it’s hot, cook the patties for 3 to 4 minutes per side, or to your level of crisp.

Crispy Salmon Cakes

Crispy Salmon Cakes

Serve with cocktail sauce, sour cream and diced tomatoes, or ketchup. You’ve now made the modern equivalent of salmon loaf. Welcome to my world. These are really good, and the ones shown were made with tofu leftover from the Summer Rolls. Seriously, I wanted to tell the world about how tasty the tofu was in there.

Salmon Cakes, Pea Pods, Couscous, and Beets

Salmon Cakes, Pea Pods, Couscous, and Beets

Is fish a friend or foe to you? Post a comment, or chime in on Twitter.

Hope everyone has a great Memorial Day weekend!

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Tune in tomorrow for Weekly Menus! Wow, where did that week go?



Filed under Punt!, Recipes

4 responses to “Punting! with Salmon Cakes

  1. nice punt! this is one of my favorite ways to recycle leftover fish of all kinds (especially cod, but also the likes of flounder, tilapia, grouper, haddock, etc.) great as a main course, with coleslaw and fries; next to a salad; or on top of a burger bun with all the fixins.

    • The Practical Cook

      Thanks Tony! Great point about other fish working well here–I’ve used flounder and cod before. And I love the idea of a full-on fishburger. Just in time for Memorial Day Weekend!

  2. Pingback: Questions from Readers: Can this (insert noun) be saved? | The Practical Cook

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