Culinary Medicine is not just about the consumption of healthful foods. It is about developing methodologies and programs that are sustainable for the individual, their community, and the planet at large. That means being responsible about food waste. In the professional kitchen, food waste means lost revenue and can be the difference between being successful in business and being bankrupt. That attitude when practiced at home is just good economics. Using all of our products wisely, allows us the freedom to purchase better quality ingredients when the initial cost may be a bit more.
Whenever stocks are made, some of the most delicious bits can be found clinging to the bones at the end of what is a long and flavorful poach. Having the patience and dedication to remove that residual meat can pay huge dividends. Such leftovers, usually ignored and discarded, can produce some of the most delicious chicken salad and fish cakes. While you could certainly purchase salmon fillets and grind them up, I would not recommend it. Use the leftovers from other preparations – here I harvested the meat left on the bone after making some salmon and orange fish stock – to create tremendously flavorful items like this salmon fish cake. Top it with a blood orange curry sauce and you’re eating like royalty on a peasant’s budget.
- 250 g (~8 ounces) finely chopped or ground prepared salmon
- 2 Tbs onion, finely minced
- 1 garlic clove, finely minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Tbs finely chopped parsley
- Zest and juice of one lemon
- 2 stalks finely chopped bok choy (you may use celery or water chestnuts)
- 1 tsp epazote
- 1/3 cup organic Panko breadcrumbs
- ¼ cup water
If you want to avoid chopping all the vegetables, you can combine the onion, garlic clove, red pepper flake, parsley, epazote, and Bok choy in a food processor and pulse until coarsely done. In a separate small bowl add the water to the breadcrumbs and allow them to hydrate for a minute or two. Add all the ingredients together and mix thoroughly. This salmon salad can be enjoyed as is at this point.
Heat a medium sauté pan over medium heat with a little olive oil. Form the mixture into 2-ounce or 4 ounce patties and cook until golden brown and delicious on both sides; about 4 to 6 minutes each side. Since the fish is already cooked, just brown the cakes. Theses cakes are quite delicate because they contain little filler, so use a fish spatula to handle deliberately. Remove and serve.