Salmon Burgers with Springtime Citrus Slaw

When I was a kid, during Lent one of the staple meals my mom would fix was salmon patties and macaroni and cheese.  She’d use the canned salmon, and mix it up with a bit of onion, breadcrumbs and egg and fry the patties up on the stove.  I’ve never been a big fan of fish made into patties due to that experience, but last week I decided I’d give it another shot.  Except this time, I was going to make a more sophisticated sort of salmon patty and serve it as a more substantial burger patty instead.  To wit:

The citrus slaw on this salmon burger makes it a great springtime dinner.

I also wanted to have my salmon burger dressed up a bit.  I’m not a fan of most condiments like mustard, mayo or ketchup on burgers or sandwiches.  I know, I’m weird like that.  But I did want something with a bit of a tooth to it, and something with crunch.

Enter the slaw you see on the patty above.  I wanted something light to complement the flavor of the salmon, which this slaw did quite nicely.  This made a great light spring dinner, and would be equally as tasty if the patties were grilled.

Here’s how I did it.  You will need:

For the patties

  • 1 pound Coho salmon, skinned and bones removed
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the slaw:

  • 4 cups thinly sliced red cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • zest of one lime
  • juice of one lime (about 1/4 cup)
  • juice of one large orange (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • salt, to taste

First, prepare the dressing for the slaw.  To do this, squeeze the juice of one lime and the juice of one orange into a large mixing bowl.  Add the canola oil and lime zest and whisk the mixture together.  Toss in the cabbage and carrots and using your hands, coat the vegetables with the dressing.  Salt to taste, and let this sit in the refrigerator for at least a half-hour to an hour before serving.

To make the patties, cut the skinned, deboned salmon into smaller pieces and pulse in a food processor with the egg white, salt, pepper and parsley until the mixture is ground coarsely.  Remove the mixture to a bowl and form 4 patties, pushing your thumb into the center to create a slight indentation.  This will keep the patties from shrinking up too much during cooking.  When forming the patties, be sure not to handle the fish too much or the patties will turn out to be too mushy.

In a skillet, heat a couple of teaspoons of canola oil.  When the oil is hot, place the patties in and cook until they are slightly brown, turning just once.

Serve on whole-wheat buns with the slaw.   We made just two patties from the fish we’d bought, but when I make this again, I will make four smaller patties as indicated in the directions.

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