So about a week ago, after eating barbecue, chicken, roast beef, bacon, pork chops, fajitas and more barbecue, my husband decided that he was ready for a break from meat for awhile… just as I was prepping a big ol’ roast with carrots, potatoes and onions for the crockpot. Great.
“I think we need more veggies and more Omega-3s right now,” he said.
That’s wonderful and all, and I totally agree… but we live in the far West Texas region of Omega-3 No-Man’s-Land.
When he decided he didn’t want what I’d already planned for dinner, the grocery store was already closed. I normally need a little more notice for something delightful for dinner when that kind of curve-ball is thrown at me.
Luckily, I had frozen wild-caught Gulf shrimp in the freezer, lots of veggies and a fool-proof recipe for stir fry sauce. Pre-washed quinoa cooked to perfection in the Instant Pot came to the rescue.
It’s not easy to go Veg or Pescatarian out here, unless you don’t cringe when your debit card swipes at the register, like I do.
A pound of shrimp out here in far West Texas is at least $11.99, when it’s on sale for $6.99 just three hours away. Three little fillets of frozen Alaskan Cod will run just under $10 locally (and by “just under”, I mean $9.99), or about $6… three hours away.
In the Chihuahuan Desert, eating food that doesn’t swim is very, very hard on your bank account.
So tonight, I remembered an old draft of a blog I wrote a while back about salmon patties… something I love and haven’t made in about four years.
I decided it was time to turn this blog “draft” into a real thing… however, tonight’s patties were made with Avocado oil, and served on a bed of locally grown greens from Mr. Dan Bennack in Alpine, who provides amazing produce for many restaurants in the region. What a treat!
I hope y’all enjoy my throw-back to 2014 🙂 This was NOT printed in the Alpine Avalanche as it was from the pre-Avalanche days when I had hungry teenagers with discerning palates (monsters WE created LOL) to feed.
It was one of those days.
One of those crazy days that didn’t involve any dinner planning or even the daily trip to the grocery store. It was a day filled with errands and appointments and meetings and traffic and a sinus-headache threatening to turn into a migraine if I didn’t take care of it quickly.
My universe was a little off-kilter.
And yet, people still wanted to eat.
Not made by them.
And not a bowl of Honey Nut Toasted O’s with coconut milk like I personally would have been happy with.
DANG. IT. ALL.
For some reason, Maryland-style crab cakes sounded really good to me. I haven’t made them in quite a while.
Regardless of how tasty they sounded, there was no way I was going to the grocery store and grabbing all the things needed for the semi-labor-intensive meal of the Maryland-style crab cake deliciousness.
Not on that day. Nope. Not.
Then it struck me upside my achy head – salmon cakes. I probably even had everything at home for them… clearly not the same as a crab cake, but it would get the job done.
Feed the people. Allow my headache to subside.
So I got to googlin’ recipes until I found one that I could bend to suit my needs. I honestly can’t recall a recipe I’ve made in the last couple years that I actually followed – cooking, for me, is about making it work with what I’ve got… especially since I have a knack for forgetting crucial items from my shopping list, even with the list in my hand.
Thankfully, I made this one work very well with what I had at home. Yay me and my brink-of-migraine-brain.
Here’s what you need:
A frying pan (I prefer my Lodge cast iron skillet)
Grapeseed oil for frying
4 (6-ounce) cans salmon, drained well (the cat was very happy to receive the drained salmon juice)
1-1/2 cups crushed crackers (I only had whole grain with seeds so that’s what I used)
2 large eggs, beaten
2 rounded (and I mean ROUNDED – don’t be scared – it’s good stuff!) teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
2 tablespoons minced red onion
1 tablespoon dried chives (because it’s what I had)
1 tablespoon dried dill
2 lemons, juiced
Coarse salt (I used pink Himalayan)
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup Srirachi sauce
good splash of dill pickle juice (because I didn’t have relish)
Pour about an inch of grapeseed oil in a skillet (preferably cast iron – the only thing I use these days for frying) over medium heat.
Flake the salmon with a fork. Add the crushed crackers to the flaked fish with your hands. Yeah, it gets messy but you can wash your hands.
Or let your cat lick them. And then wash your hands. Totally up to you.
Not really, please wash your hands… that’s my devil-may-care-because-my-head-is-killing-me attitude talking.
Add the eggs, seasoning, onion, chives, dill, pepper sauce, and a splash of lemon juice to the bowl.
Combine the ingredients well with your hands, because those are your best utensils ever.
If the mixture is a little wet, add a bit more cracker.
If the mixture is too dry, add some splashes of water.
They’ll be a little greasy. Don’t worry, grapeseed oil is good.
Luckily, I had a two-day-old unopened container of mixed greens in the fridge… baby red and green romaine lettuce. I tossed the greens with coarse salt and the remaining juice of the lemon. Drizzled the greens with a little extra-virgin olive oil and re-tossed the salad to coat.
Combine the mayonnaise, Srirachi sauce and pickle juice in a small dish.
To serve, place salmon cakes on a bed of baby greens, 2 cakes per person and top with chili mayonnaise sauce.
Everyone was happy (including the cat).
My headache went away.
I didn’t even have to go to the grocery store.
From tonight, April 22, 2018… cast iron skillets aren’t optimal on my induction cooktop ☹️ but I love my stainless cookware nonetheless 😊
I served it with Broccoli Salad. Good stuff, y’all! Sorry it’s blurry, I was hungry and took a picture in a hurry 😉