If I left it up to Patrick, we’d be eating salmon most nights of the week. A typical conversation often goes something like this, me: “What do you want to have for dinner?” Him: “Salmon.” Me: “Salmon again?!”
Patrick likes what he likes and salmon it is. He’s perfectly content with salmon (sockeye, preferably), be it grilled, smoked, cured, sashimi, ceviche, etc., accompanied by a big side of sauteed greens. No complaints whatsoever.
Me on the other hand, I crave new experiences, new flavors, new tastes. I definitely enjoy salmon, but don’t want to eat it, or seafood for that matter, every night of the week. I like to mix things up, some nights fish or seafood, some nights vegetarian, some nights red meat or poultry, some nights eggs.
So tonight, salmon it is…
But, instead of grilling a fillet of salmon, decided to turn the salmon into a burger. Kept the preparation to a minimum, using fresh herbs and spices — sumac (which imparts a nice fruity-tart, lemony flavor), thyme, and parsley — and was judicious with the filler, just enough bread crumbs and egg to bind the ingredients together without detracting from the taste. There’s lettuce, tomato, cucumber, and tzatziki to accompany the salmon burger, which is served on a toasted, buttery brioche bun.
And finally, the salmon burger is topped with these beautiful spring onion and radish microgreens [that I proudly grew myself, the extent of my urban gardening]. The microgreens are incredibly flavorful and packed with nutrients — 4x to 6x the amount of nutrients [vitamins and other phytonutrients] as compared to mature leaves of the same plant.
Refer to this post for growing microgreens on your windowsill.
I love the vibrant color of wild sockeye salmon. For the salmon burger, I removed the skin and pin bones, and coarsely chopped (with a few strokes of a cleaver). You could briefly pulse the salmon in a food processor, but the fewer appliances to clean the better in my opinion. Thereafter, I just mixed in the remaining ingredients and formed into burgers and pan-fried.BTW, don’t discard the salmon skin, it’s delish crisped up in skillet. Hmm, crispy salmon skin handrolls? Just added them to my to-do list.
Sumac and thyme salmon burger (recipe below)
Tzatziki (recipe below)
Lettuce, such as red leaf
Cumber, thinly sliced on a bias
Microgreens (used spring onion and radish)
Toast the buns on the grill or grillpan. Top with a slice of lettuce and tomato, followed by the salmon burger, a dollop of tzatziki, cucumber, and microgreens.
Sumac and Thyme Salmon Burger
1 pound [Sockeye] salmon, skinned, pin bones removed
1/4 cup onion, finely diced
1/4 cup parsley or cilantro, finely chopped
2 1/2 teaspoons sumac
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
olive oil for pan frying
Heat a tablespoon of oil in a frying pan. Cook 4 minutes on the first side, flip and cook another 2 minutes, or until the salmon has just as hint of pinkness in the middle.
Note: To determine if the salmon burger is seasoned to your liking, I recommend cooking off a small piece first.
2 cups full-fat Greek yogurt
1 large (seedless) cucumber
2 to 3 cloves of garlic, smashed to a paste
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill, more if you like
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
fresh lemon juice, to taste
sea salt to taste
Grate the cucumber (most recipes call to peel, but I usually grate with the peel). Squeeze out any excess moisture. Smash the garlic to a paste with a little sea salt with the side of a chef’s knife or in a mortar and pestle.
Combine the yogurt, grated cucumber, garlic, dill, and olive oil. Add lemon juice to taste. Season with salt to taste. Refrigerate until you are ready to use.
Note: Add fresh mint if you like, along with the fresh dill.