Mom: So send me your 'recipe'.
okay. . .I put salmon in a bowl. The first time it was two 14.something ounce pouches, this time it was four seven ounce cans. Four was more than I really wanted, but three wasn't quite enough. I blame the metric system. As a binder most recipes call for an egg per 14-15 ounces of salmon (so 2 eggs, either way). I prefer chicken eggs for this application, and strenuously counsel against emu, mainly since the unusual shell color won't match your kitchen decor. I used sweet onion the first time, green onion this time, most of a bundle sliced about as thinly as I could manage quickly. So, you know, if you don't have mad knife skills, reserve an hour for this step. At this point there's onion salt, black pepper, paprika, garlic, basil, and Old Bay involved. I measured nothing. I regret nothing. Next I would normally sacrifice a goat to Poseidon to ensure the success of my salmon patties; however, I am given to understand that the thoroughly thoughtful people at Old Bay do this at the production plant and, therefore, that recipes including their product are automatically covered. The things you learn on Food Network. Mayonnaise is next, as if you were making a tuna salad sort of thing, enough to get it pretty wet. I also include a line of mustard and a little smoked horseradish sauce, since I have it on hand, and I couldn't see how it could possibly go wrong. Most recipes call for butter or vegetable or olive oil, and not for the mayo/mustard/etc. . . The problem is that most recipes I've looked at call for so little that it'd be next to impossible for them to not turn out over-dry. I suppose if you were going to skimp on the bread crumbs it might be proportionate, but somehow I doubt it. Anyway, I like the additional flavor from the dressing(s). Do not add the bread crumbs (I've been using seasoned, but I think I'm going to switch next time to plain to give some of the other flavors more breathing room). But, as I said, don't add the bread crumbs. In case I wasn't clear, don't add the bread crumbs! Mix everything thoroughly in the bowl until you've got a wet, sloppy mess, something a two year old might make (either mischievously or anatomically) and throw it in the fridge for a couple hours to . . .meld? mingle? buy the lettuce a drink and get the bacon's phone number? When you're ready to eat, pull the bowl out and start stirring in the bread crumbs. I've used most of a regular sized (not big) canister both times, at least in part to make it go farther, but all you really need is to sop up enough of the juiciness that it'll form into patties. Throw a cast iron skillet on to the stovetop. No, not literally, you twit. Yes, a literal cast iron skillet, no don't actually throw it. Turn the heat up to medium-high. This is a seven on my stove, though it should be noted that despite my awesomeness, those dials do not (yet) go to 11. Adjust your controls accordingly. Add a couple tablespoons of butter to the skillet. While the skillet and butter are heating up, start grabbing handfuls of the salmon mixture, rolling it into appropriately sized balls (tee hee) and flattening them into patties. I've been going slider-sized recently (3/4-1" thick, 2-3" diameter). Set the patties on a platter as you form them, or on a cat, if the cat is recently bathed. Two or three per person seems to be about right at these sizes. Salmon patties, not cats. When the cast iron is good and toasty, lay the patties in close to the middle and then Leave Them The Hell Alone for a number of minutes I forgot to count. Basically, at this point, you're waiting for That Smell, the smell of a good dark crisp forming on the bottom. While this is going on do two things; turn on the fan on your stove, if you haven't done so, since you stand a decent chance of setting off the smoke detector, and prep your buns/plates. Kosher dill pickles are the best side I've discovered so far, though the Normandy blend mixed veggies were a close second. As to the buns, I've played with mayo and cheese and mustard and red pepper paste and balsamic vinegar and other things and the conclusion I have come to is this: Hot Sauce. You must have hot sauce on these. Tabasco, Garlic Tabasco, Buffalo Tabasco, Frank's Red Hot Wing Sauce, any by itself brushed onto the bun or mixed with mayo and dolloped. Pick your favorite, but these salmon patties really shine when they're dressed with a little heat. For buns I used the store brand slider buns the first time and the Amana small white dinner rolls, which were perfect, the second time. So, I guess my advice here is to exploit the presence of whatever small cultural-religious ethnic minority with a penchant for baked goods exists in your neck of the woods. HEY, WHY ARE YOU STILL READING THIS?!?!?! FLIP THOSE SALMON PATTIES! Geez, pay attention, would you? They should have a good dark crisp on the bottom. Let them go about as long on the second side, and then turn the heat off and move them to the outside edge of the pan to finish heating through while you finish up the buns. Um. After that. . .well, if I have to spell out the assembly step for you, I probably shouldn't have let you play with a stove. . .or knife . . .or hot sauce earlier. And just so we're clear, this is what you get for asking me for my 'recipe'. You're welcome.
Posted here for your entertainment.