Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Salmon Burgers For Days When You Think You Have Nothing In The Cupboard

At the moment I feel like my life is being lived with the fast forward button jammed down. How is it already September? Why do I have days like today, when I feel like I am in a relay race where I run from A to B to C to D and so on until I collapse into bed when I reach Z? The problem with days like this is that not only is there no time to dash through the supermarket or butcher and gather something for the tribe, but there is no time to even reflect on what the tribe might like for dinner. Until of course, I am at home with two starving children and no inclination whatsoever to get back in the car and get some food.

Belinda Jeffrey to the rescue. I found this genius recipe in the "Belinda Jeffrey's 100 Favourite Recipes" cookbook, that I have referred to here before. The key ingredient is tinned salmon, which is one of those things that can be found in the back of most people's pantry, on even the most dire days. Mix in some mayonnaise to bind it together with some vegies and spices, roll patties in some bread crumbs, pan fry and serve. Children fed. Mother's sanity remains in tact. And the crowd cheers.

Red Salmon Burgers
adapted from Belinda Jeffrey's 101 Favourite Recipes

400g tinned salmon, well-drained and picked over to remove any skin or bones
2 green onions, chopped (you can substitute chives if you don't have)
3 tbls celery, finely chopped
2 tbls basil finely shredded
1/2 small red chilli (or to taste)
1/2 tsp tabasco sauce
1/2 tsp worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup good quality mayonnaise
2-3 tbls of dry breadcrumbs
oil for cooking

Crumble the salmon into large flakes in a bowl. Add green onions, basil, celery, chilli, sauces, mayonnaise and salt and pepper to taste. Stir gently then slowly add the breadcrumbs until the mixture is binding together. Let the mixture rest for a few minutes then divide it into four portions and shape each into a pattie. Place the patties on a plate and chill for at least 1/2 hour to firm them.

Heat oil in a non-stick pan over medium low heat. Add the burgers and fry for five minutes on each side, until they are crisp and brown. Be careful when turning them so that the patties do not fall apart (I use two spatulas). Once browned on both sides, drain them on paper towel. Serve in a bun with some lettuce and extra mayonnaise if desired.

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