Monday, November 07, 2011

Recipe: Salmon Fishcakes

Sometimes food doesn't have to be complex. Sometimes it can be really, really simple. Like this recipe for salmon fishcakes, which I got from a South African colleague. He reminisced about growing up in a community where there wasn't a lot of refrigeration, so his mother depended on tinned food to feed him as a young boy.

These are really simple to make, you can use tins of red salmon but you can also add fresh fish to them, or even chunks of scallop or crab and mashed potato, red scallions and capers, if you're feeling fancy. They taste best when they are served piping hot!

(Serves 6)
1 can or 16 ounces red salmon
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley or cilantro
ground black pepper, to taste
2 large eggs, well beaten
1 cup fine dry bread crumbs
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup of vegetable or flavourless oil
5 tablespoons flour
juice of a lemon

1. Turn salmon and liquid into a medium mixing bowl. Flake with a fork, removing or mashing any bones (they are edible).
2. Mix in chopped onion, parsley and pepper.
3. Mix beaten eggs with salmon. Add enough bread crumbs, about 1/2 to 3/4 cup, to make thick enough to shape into 12 small patties.
4. Roll patties in flour. I found it easiest to shape them (I prefer mine small and bite-sized), then drizzle and pat dry flour onto the patties, taking care to fry them before they became wet again.
5. In a large heavy skillet over low heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 1/2 cup of oil; add patties.
6. Fry patties slowly on one side; turn patties and fry until brown on the other side. Some people prefer to pan-fry the patties with just the oil, I find this presents a problem with making the patties stick but it's probably healthier.
7. Serve with ketchup, cilantro chiffonade and a squeeze of lemon.

* Thank you to M. for the gorgeous photographs!