Wild Salmon Burgers

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Growing up in Seattle, I was spoiled with an abundance of gorgeous, high-quality, sustainable Alaskan salmon. Sockeye is my favorite. I never tasted farmed or Atlantic salmon until college, and to this day the creamy, fatty flesh of farmed salmon still puts me off. Not to mention the environmental and health hazards of farmed salmon (I’ll get into that another day). Unfortunately, finding wild salmon at a reasonable price in Singapore is no easy feat. I’ve tried to devise many ways of importing salmon myself – purchasing sockeye fillets in Seattle, freezing them in vacuum-packed bags packed with dry ice, and checking them in on our flights back to Singapore – but it all just seemed like too much work and too risky given there are no direct flights between Singapore and Seattle.

Last June when we were at my favorite place on earth (aka Costco), I saw a package of canned wild salmon and threw it into my shopping cart on a whim (this happens a lot at Costco). The cans flew 8,000 miles back with us and sat in my pantry in Singapore for months until I had a moment of genius and made these burgers.

Not to toot my own horn, but these burgers are amazing. I guarantee they are better than any salmon burger you’ve had at a restaurant (which is actually a pretty low bar – why are restaurant salmon burgers universally awful?). And they are the perfect lazy weeknight meal as the patties only take about 10 minutes to come together and under 10 to cook. That’s my kind of meal! In celebration, I’ve started a new tag called “30 minute meals” which, as the name suggests, are meals that take 30 or fewer minutes to come together.

Shall we get started?

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You’ll need a can of wild salmon, panko crumbs, 1/2 a small onion, the green parts of a bunch of spring onions, mustard, mayonnaise, chipotle pepper sauce, and whatever spices you’d like. I’m using black pepper, garlic power, onion powder, and cayenne.

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Begin by draining the can of salmon and mashing with a fork in a medium bowl.

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Dice up the onions and spring onions and add to the bowl with along with a small egg. You’ll want the dice to be fairly small.

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Add a teaspoon of mustard.

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And a tablespoon of mayonnaise.

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A few dashes of Chipotle pepper sauce. This is the stuff dreams are made of.

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And stir to combine.

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Finally, add 1/2 cup of panko crumbs and any spices you want, and mix well.

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Voila! There you have it. The makings of a perfect salmon patty.

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This will make two large salmon patties or 3 smaller patties. I usually divide the batter in two and shape the patties with my hands. They should come together easily without crumbling. Please ignore my wrinkly, pink palm.

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Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. When the pan is hot, add the salmon patties and gently press down with a spatula. Cook for 4 minutes, or until the bottom is golden brown.

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Flip and cook for another 3 minutes. Look at that beautiful crust.

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While the patties are cooking, make the chipotle mayo by adding a few dashes of chipotle pepper sauce to a few tablespoons of mayonnaise. This ain’t rocket science folks.

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You can serve these burgers on mini buns just to be funny (or because you didn’t have any regular buns and were too lazy to rush to the grocery store), or if you’re on a low carb diet you can serve the patties on a bed of baby spinach. You could even eat them on their own with a bit of lemon. The options are endless.

Printable recipe below.

Recipe
Makes 2 large or 3 smaller patties

Ingredients
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 6 minutes

For the salmon patties
1 6oz can of wild salmon, well drained
2 french shallots or  1/2 of a small onion, diced
2 stalks of green onions, chopped, white part discarded
1 small egg
1 tsp mustard
1 tbs mayonaise
a few dashes of chipotle hot sauce
a combination of spices to taste, I like 1/4 tsp each of freshly ground pepper, cayenne, garlic powder, onion powder
salt to taste (I find that if the salmon is canned with salt, not much more salt is needed)
1/2 cup panko crumbs

For the chipotle mayo
3 tbs mayonaise
5 dashes of chipotle hot sauce

Instructions

  1. In a medium-sized bowl, combine all ingredients and mash together with a fork until it comes together.
  2. Using your hands, form into two regular-sized patties or 3 smaller patties.
  3. Heat 2 tbs of olive oil or butter in a cast iron pan over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the patties and cook on each side for 3-4 minutes until golden brown.
  4. Combine mayonnaise and chipotle hot sauce to make chipotle mayo.
  5. Serve patties on a toasted bun or bed of spinach with a wedge of lemon and chipotle mayo.

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