October 21, 2009

Dill & Caper Salmon Cakes

14 ounces cooked fresh salmon
1/2 cup panko, divided use
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup diced celery
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 shallot, minced
2 tablespoons nonpareil capers
1 tablespoon minced dill

additional panko for dredging
canola oil

Mash the salmon with a potato masher until fairly smooth. Add 1/2 cup panko and all of the remaining ingredients. Mix. Form into eight patties. Pour panko into a shallow bowl. Dredge the patties in the panko. Refrigerate 10 minutes. Heat about a quarter inch of oil in a large skillet. Fry each patty, flipping once, until golden on both sides. Drain on paper towel lined plates.

My thoughts:
What can be simpler or more satisfying than a salmon cake? I've had many a bland croquette though, and set out to make a truly flavorful cake that is worthy of the salmon inside. I know a lot of people use canned salmon in salmon cakes but frankly, I just don't like the flavor or texture of canned salmon. At all. Instead, I like to use leftover (cooked) fresh salmon. It really makes all the difference. I then made a filling that was inspired by the rémoulade that is often served aside salmon cakes; one with plenty of dill, mustard and capers. This made the cakes quite flavorful without overwhelming the flavor of the salmon. I then rolled them in panko for a light crust rather than a heavy breaded one. The result: an elegant and delicious salmon cake that took no more effort than the most basic variety. I can't wait until I have leftover salmon again!