The days are shorter and colder; winter is upon us, but we wanted one last summer-time meal before we officially kick off the holiday season.
Also, I had this brand new, pre-seasoned Lodge grill just waiting for a workout.
I had visions of homemade salmon burgers on homemade sesame buns, dripping with tartar sauce. So, feeling ambitious one afternoon, I gave it a try.
This was my first time concocting the whole ensemble, but it was quite easy to whip up.
Preparing the buns
Since the buns require a total of about 4 hours to prepare and bake, I started there. For these, I used a modified recipe I found at Allrecipes. My version is this:
- 2 teaspoons (10 grams) of yeast
- 1 pound (450 g) of flour
- 1 cup (235 milliliters) of water
- 2 eggs
- 3 tablespoons (45 g) of vegetable oil
- 1 tsp (5 g) of salt
- 2 tsp (5 g) of sugar
- 1 egg beaten (for coating the buns)
- 1 tbsp (14 ml) of milk
- 1 tsp (5 g) of sesame seeds
What you’ll notice in comparison to the original recipe is very minor: I swapped out the butter for the vegetable oil and reduced the salt and sugar. You do need salt and sugar, they are active ingredients in leavening the bread, but I find most recipes use too much.
If you are mixing by hand, the steps are in the original link. I used my Zojirushi bread maker for the mixing and proofing, then followed the steps provided for making the individual buns, baked at 375F (190C) for 15 to 17 minutes.
Also note: you’ll use one egg in the dough. The other is to coat the buns and then sprinkle the sesame seeds on before baking.
The salmon patties
As I mentioned, I have never made salmon patties before. But I have plenty of experience with potato pancakes (and old favorite of my mother’s) and, of course, traditional ground-beef hamburgers.
I found a very easy recipe on Food Network, which I modified ever so slightly:
- 1.5 lbs (680 g) of salmon
- 2 tbsps (28 ml) of dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp (14 ml) of mayonaisse
- 1 tsp (5 ml) of lemon juice
- 2 scallions
- 1 cup (250 g) of bread crumbs
- 2 tbsps (28 ml) of olive oil
- 2 eggs
- Pinches of salt and pepper
- Pinches of onion and garlic powder
- 1 tsp (5 g) of basil
Directions are simple:
1. Remove the salmon skin (do not throw it away!). 2. Take three-fourths of the salmon and slice into quarter-inch (approximately 7 or 8 millimeters) cubes. 3. Combine the remaining salmon with mustard, lemon juice, olive oil, mayonnaise, and 1 egg. Use either a blender or food processor to pulse to a paste. If you have neither appliance, you can easily pulverize it with a fork or potato masher. 4. Combine the mashed contents with the cubed salmon. 5. Add bread crumbs. 6. Mix and mold by hand into patties. 6. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for a half hour. 7. Beat the remaining egg and place in a wide bowl. 8. Place some bread crumbs in another wide bowl. Heat griddle or large pan. Dip each patty in the egg batter on both sides and then into the bread crumbs. 8. Place on griddle for 3 to 4 minutes on each side.
Since I cooked mine on the griddle, I also cooked the salmon skins at the same time. After cooking and allowing to cool, I put these in the freezer. Sherry will use them the next time she makes “niouk yen,” which is a Mauritian dish (sort of a cross between a dumpling and a meatball).
I found a recipe here, if you are interested in learning more about them.
The tartar sauce
This is also something I have never made before. Many recipes call for using dill pickles. We had none. I simply mixed about a half cup of mayonnaise, 1 teaspoon of lemon juice, a tablespoon or so of dill, 2 teaspoons of worcester sauce.
We served up our burgers with (what else?) corn on the cob. Our last summer fare. Ah, the season is officially over. But it was quite tasty until the bitter end.