Wild salmon patties recipe (gluten-free and paleo)

wild salmon patties | pamela salzman

Happy new year!  I’m just curious, are you on a cleanse?  Which one?  There are soooo many, I’m not sure if you’ve noticed.  I have noticed, because I live in LA and I teach cooking classes all the time and once I resume teaching tomorrow, I’m going to hear all about what cleanses my students are on!

my favorite canned wild salmon

Some are hard core and just drink juice all day.  I swear.  Just.  Juice.  No.  Food.  Others will suffer through a concoction of lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup.  Then there are easier cleanses where you can actually eat real food, as long as it doesn’t contain gluten, alcohol, dairy, sugar, red meat, or caffeine.  Or peanuts.  Or oranges.  Or tomatoes.

wild salmon patty ingredients

I’m just having a little fun here.  I think if a cleanse can help break some bad habits, great.  I’m not really a fan of not eating food though, unless you are at a spa and you don’t have to work, drive your kids to school, help them with homework or make meals for your family.

mix it all together

I am a fan of thinking about the person you want to be – healthy, energetic, positive, creative, maintaining a healthy weight – and making a commitment to eat in a way that supports that vision.  Continuing to overeat and drink after the holidays does not promote good health.  Overdoing sugar and simple carbs doesn’t either.  Maybe just a little more mindfulness and some specific, realistic goals are what we need.

wild salmon patties | pamela salzman

How does all this tie into these wild salmon patties?  Not sure.  But my son, Mr. Picky, thought I should finally post this recipe.  Yes, Mr. Picky loves these salmon patties. I know he probably shouldn’t be called Mr. Picky anymore, but I could give you 579 reasons why the name stays.   Mr. Picky actually does like salmon, as well as many other types of fish.  The more simply prepared, the better.

The first time I made these salmon patties, Mr. Picky said to me, “Mom, the next time you want to make salmon, think salmon patties!”  Ok, little dude.  These are a little different from many fish patties though, because they are lacking filler.  They’re basically just salmon.  No bread, breadcrumbs or crackers were used here.  Maybe that’s why I thought they’d be a good, clean eat at the beginning of the new year when a lot of us are looking for good, clean eats.

wild salmon patties  | pamela salzman

They are also made with canned salmon, so this can be a last minute pantry meal if you happen to keep canned salmon around.  I buy my canned salmon from Vital Choice because it’s the best I’ve found.  It’s wild, clean, and the cans are not lined with BPA.  What more can you ask for?  (Unfortunately, it’s a tad expensive.  But feel free to use whatever canned wild salmon is your fave.)  I also love this recipe because you can prepare the patties in the morning, refrigerate them and then cook them up for dinner when you get home.  Love recipes like this!

wild salmon patties  | pamela salzman

I serve these on a salad with avocado and baked sweet potato fries, or with cauliflower mashed potatoes and some greens.  I suppose you could serve them on a hamburger bun, but only if you’re eating flour, grains, gluten and you’re not Paleo or grain-free.  Just saying.

wild salmon patties  | pamela salzman

 

4.4 from 8 reviews
Wild Salmon Patties
Author: 
Serves: makes 8 patties (I think this serves 4 people well)
 
Ingredients
  • 24 ounces canned wild salmon, preferably without bones, drained
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 small or 1 large shallot, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • unrefined coconut oil or olive oil for sautéing
Instructions
  1. Place the drained salmon in a large bowl and break it up with a fork.
  2. Add remaining ingredients, except oil, to the bowl and gently mix until combined.
  3. Form into patties with your hands and place on a flat plate or small baking sheet.  Refrigerate, covered, for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 day.
  4. Warm a griddle or large skillet over medium with enough oil to cover the pan ⅛-inch deep.
  5. Place the salmon patties in the pan and cook until golden brown on the underside.  Carefully flip the patty (I like to do this by sliding a metal spatula under the patty with one hand and flipping the patty against the side of the pan and allowing it to slide back down to cook the other side.  This will help avoid splattering and breaking the patty.) and cook the other side until golden brown.  You don’t have to worry about whether or not the salmon cakes are cooked through, because canned salmon is already cooked.
  6. Serve warm with a side salad or on a rice bowl.  I also like putting a little chipotle Vegenaise and some avocado on top.

Vegan mac and cheese recipe

Vegan Mac & Cheese|Pamela Salzman

If someone tried to coax me a year ago with a “vegan mac and cheese” recipe, I would have politely said, “no, thank you.”  First of all, I actually don’t really like mac and cheese.  Not the boxed kind and not even the homemade kind.  Weird, I know.  And sad for my husband who looooooves it.  I used to have to make him the famous “Ronald Reagan’s favorite mac and cheese” recipe all the time when we first got married.  Tons of butter, cheddar cheese, milk, stomach ache for me.  Just not my thing.  It’s now the 21st century, and we’re both eating differently and I am open minded to alternative recipes.

potatoes, carrots, shallot, onion cook the veggies in water, but cover them everything into the blender"cheese sauce"

Although open minded or not, I’ve always felt if I’m not going to like the real deal, why would I like something pretending to be the real deal?  And most vegan mac and cheese recipes call for fake processed cheese or nutritional yeast and they’re just not that tasty, in my opinion.  Are you with me?  Well, according to myself and according to Mr. Picky who still doesn’t like cheese except Pecorino Romano in some soups and on pizza crust, this mac and cheese is the bomb.  I think it’s better than mac and cheese and he likes it because he has watched me make it and is confident there is not a morsel of cheese, real or fake, anywhere in this dish.

bread crumbs

 

You may have seen on a month ago a picture I posted of “vegan nachos” I made for the kids.  Here it is below.  That’s the same sauce for this!  You may have also seen a strange looking bowl of yellow stuff on my baked potato bar.  Same vegan cheese sauce!  Do you see the potential here?  What about as a dip for steamed veggies?  I might even make a soup out of this.  We are not just talking about a mac and cheese recipe.  We are talking about a life-changing delicious not-cheese sauce.   This sauce is a miracle.  It is made from potatoes, cashews, carrots, onions and a bunch of other completely natural foods blended into creamy, cheesy deliciousness.  Completely digestible (unless you are nut-free, in which case I am so sorry.  Buggers.)  I know I sound crazy.  I wouldn’t believe me either.

vegan nachos | pamela salzman

vegan mac & cheese|pamela salzman

vegan mac and cheese | pamela salzman

The only trick with this recipe is that you have to follow it exactly!  No eyeballing measurements.  No leaving things out.  Anytime I have guesstimated an amount with this recipe, it hasn’t worked quite as well, especially with ingredients like cayenne, lemon juice (you can leave this out, but just don’t add more than indicated) and garlic.  Some of the images on this post were taken of light spelt macaroni and some of whole spelt macaroni.  My family much prefers the light spelt pasta with this sauce, but you should use whatever suits you.  I have also tried this with brown rice pasta and a corn-quinoa pasta — both super!   Once I threw some small cauliflower florets into the pasta pot two minutes before the pasta was done and made a cauliflower mac and cheese.  (See above.)  I’m sure broccoli and kale would be great, too!  Can you see how much fun we are going to have with this??!!

vegan mac and cheese | pamela salzman

Vegan Mac & Cheese|Pamela Salzman

4.8 from 13 reviews
Vegan Mac and Cheese
Author: 
Serves: 6 as a side dish
 
Ingredients
  • 8 ounce package elbow macaroni pasta (I like spelt.)
  • 2 slices bread, torn into large pieces (whole grain works!)
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter (not vegan) or organic Earth Balance (vegan), divided
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped shallots
  • 1 cup (about 7 ounces) chopped Yukon gold potatoes (you can leave the peel on)
  • ¼ cup chopped carrots (about 1 small carrot)
  • ⅓ cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ cup raw cashews (soaked for 1-5 hours and drained if you your blender is weak)
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt (use 1 ¾ teaspoons if using Earth Balance)
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic, minced (about 1 medium clove)
  • ¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, add the shallots, potatoes, carrots, onion and water and bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook, covered, for 15 minutes, or until vegetables are very soft. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook the pasta in salted water until al dente, drain and put back into the pot.
  3. Put the bread pieces, 1 Tablespoon of butter and paprika in a food processor fitted with a metal blade and process until combined to a medium-fine texture, set aside.
  4. Place the cashews, salt, garlic, 5 Tablespoons butter, mustard, lemon juice, black pepper, and cayenne in a blender or food processor. Add the softened vegetables and cooking water to the blender or food processor and process until perfectly smooth.
  5. Pour the “cheese” sauce over the cooked pasta and combine until completely coated. Spread the mixture into an un-greased 11 x 8 casserole dish, sprinkle with prepared breadcrumb mixture. Bake for 30 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling and the top is golden brown. If you add veggies (such as 1 or 2 cups of blanched cauliflower or broccoli) to the macaroni, cook in a 13 x 9 dish.
Notes
I actually don't make the vegan version for us because we can eat butter.   But I have made this with Earth Balance (which is vegan) many times and it has always turned out great.  I have never made this without the bread crumbs, though.  I think they provide a nice contrast in texture to the soft and creamy macaroni, but if not everyone will eat the bread crumbs, I am sure you can leave a square of the baking dish free of them.

Spicy honey-lemon green beans recipe

spicy honey lemon green beans | pamela salzman

If you follow me on either Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, you’ve probably figured out that I am back on Long Island at my parents’ house.  We picked up Daughter #1 on Saturday from her summer program in upstate NY.  I was so beyond excited to see her after 6 weeks, I was afraid I was going to suffocate her when I saw her.  It was great for the five of us to be together again and I couldn’t resist another visit to Stony Brook.  Love that place in the summer.

blanched green beans

We’ve had an amazing few days here — peaceful, not in a rush to do anything, no stress, beautiful.  My father’s garden is bursting.  I lost count of how many basil plants he has this year, perhaps around 40.  I have made pesto every day so far!  But the big fun has come from the new outdoor pizza oven my father had built.  It was a major project when I was here in June, with each of my parents saying to me without the other hearing, “I don’t know what we were thinking.”  But once the dust settled, literally, we have enjoyed the most fantastic pizzas — you know the thin kind with a little char on the crust?  So darn good.  Not fitting in my skinny jeans today, but so. darn. good.

prepping shallots

Sorry this isn’t a post about making your own pizza in a wood-burning oven, but I personally don’t have one nor will I in my current house since my “yard” is a patio!  Figuring most of my readers don’t own one either.  Instead I wanted to share my favorite new green bean recipe.  No yawning!  These are great!  But I know where you’re coming from.  Green beans come into season in the summer and I try really hard to get excited about them, but they have to compete with tomatoes and corn.  Kind of hard to do.  I honestly don’t have too many exciting green bean recipes that I think to myself, “I am soooo craving those such-and-such green beans.”  Until now.

soaking shallots

I taught these honey-lemon green beans last month and I couldn’t wait to eat them after each class and any leftovers for dinner the same night!  The dressing has a bit of mustard too, and a little kick from the cayenne which is always something I love paired with sweet (honey.)  They are seriously addictive.  One of the only cooked vegetables Mr. Picky likes is green beans, but he doesn’t care for vinaigrettes yet.  Except he did love these!  He’s starting to develop a taste for spicy food.  Very exciting!

spicy honey lemon green beans

mix it together

The recipe for the green beans and the dressing is completely straightforward and quick to make.  If you are in a time crunch, just make that and forget about the shallots.  Blanching and quick-pickling the shallots is definitely another step that won’t make or break the recipe, although they are scrumptious.  You can certainly take care of that while the beans are cooking and while you’re setting the table or grilling some fish.  But sometimes when I try and multitask too much, that’s when I forget things -like shallots pickling in apple cider vinegar that I remember when I start washing dishes.

spicy honey-lemon green beans | pamela salzman

5.0 from 1 reviews
Spicy Honey-Lemon Green Beans
Author: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • For the Green Beans and Shallots:
  • 3 Tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 large shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 ½ pounds string beans, trimmed
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar, preferably raw
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • For The Vinaigrette:
  • 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 small glove garlic, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon mild honey, preferably raw
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 Tablespoons unrefined, cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil
Instructions
  1. Spread a clean kitchen towel on a baking sheet and set aside.
  2. In a large pot, bring 3 quarts water to a boil. Add kosher salt.
  3. Place the sliced shallots in a bowl and cover with 2 cups of the boiling water. Cover the bowl with a plate and set aside for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Drop the beans in to the remaining boiling water and cook, uncovered, for 4 to 6 minutes, until crisp tender. Drain the beans and spread them on the cloth-lined pan.
  5. Drain the shallots and toss them with the vinegar, the remaining ½ teaspoon salt, and pepper. Set aside.
  6. To make the vinaigrette, combine the lemon juice, mustard, garlic, honey, salt and cayenne in a large mixing bowl. Whisk until smooth. Slowly whisk in the oil until creamy.
  7. Drain the shallots once again and squeeze dry. Add the shallots and the string beans to the vinaigrette and toss well. Sprinkle with another pinch of sea salt or to taste.
  8. If you have time, let it marinate for 15 minutes at room temperature before serving just to allow the flavors to permeate the beans. If you don't have time, they'll still be great.
Notes
These really aren't that spicy, perhaps a 3 on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the hottest.  But you can certainly adjust the level of heat to your liking by increasing or decreasing the cayenne.

 

Hot spinach artichoke dip recipe

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas!   Even though you haven’t heard from me in a few days, I have been cooking up a storm nonetheless!  We arrived in NY to visit my family and between Christmas Eve for 79 people to breakfast-lunch-dinner for our clan of 15 every day, I’ve been busy in the kitchen.  What has been fun is the team effort.  My sisters, my mom and I have been planning and preparing together which really is the only way when you’re trying to figure out what to make that most everyone will like.  My husband is actually pitching in as I type this and making baked ziti with my mother for tonight’s dinner.  It is seriously hilarious listening to him explain his “method” to my Italian mother.  Also nice to have the night off so I have a few minutes to write something for you lovely readers!

I always find at this time of year many of my friends and students are looking for a winner hors d’oeuvre for all the entertaining and football-watching they do.  I have quite a few on the site already and you can check out the segments I did for our local news the last two years, but I would love to share this popular (although I wouldn’t say the most healthful) dip that is always very popular.  Hot spinach artichoke dip is something my husband and my kids love to share in a restaurant.  They somehow rationalize all the sour cream and cheese with the presence of spinach in there.  This is a lighter version, but still warm, creamy and tastes just like the one you’ve had at your favorite restaurant.  My kids like to scoop this onto crostini, pita chips or even tortilla chips.  Although I’ve eaten the dip with sweet bell pepper strips  and blanched cauliflower, I think they probably had the better idea.

I know you busy you all are and what you really want to know is how you can do this ahead of time so you you’re as relaxed as Ina when her guests arrive.  Oh how I’d love to be invited over for cocktails and cards with Ina!  But I digress.  You will blend this whole concoction together in no time — no sauteeing or blanching — and keep it covered in the fridge until the next day when you want to serve it.  Then uncover it and bake it for about 25 minutes until hot and melted and bubbly.  I usually time this to be ready about 15 minutes after I’ve told my guests to arrive since no one these days shows up exactly on time, including yours truly.  This dip is really best served hot and because there’s cheese in it, the longer it sits out, the more it firms up.  So it’s best if you don’t have this out too early.  I also recommend if you’re going to make a few for a longer cocktail party or football game to stagger them about an hour apart so you can serve a nice hot one a few times.  Very recently I discovered a new and incredible way to eat leftovers of this dip — blended with beaten eggs and baked as a frittata, which is this photo right below.

Leftovers can be mixed with beaten egg and baked into a frittata

Now you can have your fabulous hors d’oeuvre for New Year’s Eve and the beginnings of an amazing New Year’s Day breakfast.  Does it get any better than this???

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
Hot Spinach and Artichoke Dip
Author: 
Serves: makes about 3¾ cups or enough for about 8 people
 
Ingredients
  • 10 ounces artichoke hearts frozen, defrosted or packed in water, drained
  • ¼ cup chopped shallots
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 10 ounces frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry (I do this in a thin clean kitchen towel) or 10 ounces fresh spinach, steamed in a little water until wilted and excess water squeezed out
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup Vegenaise or mayonnaise (I use soy-free Vegenaise.)
  • ⅔ cup grated Pecorino or Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (I use Pecorino.)
  • 4 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a food processor, coarsely chop the artichoke hearts with the shallots and garlic.
  3. Combine all the ingredients in a medium bowl.
  4. Place in a 9 or 10-inch oven-proof dish and bake for 20-25 minutes, until hot and cheese is melted. Serve immediately.
Notes
Notes: this obviously has a lot of dairy, but it *may* be possible to make this dairy-free with vegan mozzarella (Violife has a good one) and vegan Parmesan and vegan yogurt (Forager cashew yogurt or Kite Hill coconut yogurt may work.)

You can assemble this in the baking dish the night before, remove from the refrigerator before you preheat the oven so it's not ice cold, and then bake.

 

 

Grilled panzanella recipe

We are alive and well on our European holiday, although I may need a vacation after we return home!  We met our friends in Berlin a few days ago and have been having the best time.   What a cool, interesting, beautiful and progressive city!  Daughter #1 announced she will be moving to Berlin after college.  First things first, Missy.   All the kids have been fantastic – really going with the flow.  At times, I felt like we were on an episode of Amazing Race, figuring out metro schedules and running to catch trains, deciphering maps, and trying to translate foreign languages.  The good thing is that we have generally been laughing our way through it all.  Our overnight train trip from Berlin to Munich last night was particularly memorable as it was a first for all to sleep in beds on a train.  Before you picture us on the Orient Express, think again!  It wasn’t nearly that glamourous, but certainly provided us with a few giggles and good stories to tell when we are back home again.  As I write this, we are on another train from Munich to Salzburg, Austria.

As far as eating a whole, unrefined diet, I threw in the towel back in Copenhagen.  It is terribly difficult to avoid European bread when it is so darn good.  Once I gave into bread, pasta/spatzle, pizza and pastries came after.  Something tells me Austria will offer more of the same.  Mr. Picky is enamored with game sausages and mustard and I had my first beer since college just for kicks.   One was enough and I would just as soon eat fried potatoes than drink another beer.  We have really eaten a broad mix of cuisines which I think you’ll find in most major cities.

I will not start a war here by declaring the bread best in any particular city or country, but I can say that Europeans love bread.  We’ve eaten baguettes, spelt rolls, pretzel bread, whole rye, sourdough and more.  I also know that Europeans like to be efficient with their food and make good use of day old bread which might be otherwise thrown away.  I thought today would be a good time to share my recipe for Grilled Panzanella.

Panzanella is essentially an Italian bread salad, although I believe Spain has its own version of it, too.  Earlier in the summer, I also did a post on Fattoush, which is a Lebanese take on the same.  Sometimes it can be as simple as soaking stale bread in a mixture of vinegar and water and mixing it with fresh tomatoes and a pinch of salt.  When I was growing up, we would tear the stale bread and mix it with tomatoes from the garden, basil, red onions, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper.  The stale bread would soak up the oil, vinegar and tomato juices and soften up a bit, too – really tasty.

I don’t eat bread very often, but if you grill it, I’ll never turn it down, especially if it’s rubbed with garlic and the edges are slightly black and smoky.  Simple and heavenly.  Try rubbing grilled bread with a cut, ripe tomato and you’ll go crazy.  In as much as I love a simple panzanella in the summer, I knew it would be better with grilled bread and it is!  Ina Garten has a Grilled Panzanella which I hear is delicious.  Not only does she grill the bread, but onions and peppers as well.

This salad is a snap to make and prep in advance if you need to, just keep the bread, chopped vegetables and dressing separate until you’re ready to serve.  Although most Italians would disagree with me, I think you should feel free to create your own yummy version of Panzanella.  I added capers to this one because I love a salty bite, but olives would be great, too.  There are versions with ripe, sliced peaches.  I also think baby mozzarella balls or chickpeas would also be nice in here, but try and keep it simple.

Our train has just entered Austria and we are already enamored of this beautiful countryside and all the adventures that await us.  Stay tuned….

Grilled Panzanella
Author: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup unrefined extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing bread
  • 1 large clove of garlic, minced + 1 large clove
  • 4 Tablespoons of raw apple cider vinegar or red wine vinegar (raw apple cider vinegar is a more healthful choice)
  • fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 Persian cucumbers, unpeeled and chopped into ½-inch thick chunks
  • 2 large ripe tomatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes (about ½ pound each)
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 6 Tablespoons capers, drained
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • ½ pound loaf or crusty peasant bread or baguette, cut on the diagonal into 1-inch slices
Instructions
  1. Preheat the grill to medium heat.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, minced garlic, vinegar, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Set aside.
  3. Place the cucumbers, tomato, basil, capers, and shallots in a large bowl. Sprinkle with large pinch of salt and pepper.
  4. Brush bread slices on both sides with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt. Toast them on the grill until golden, about 4 minutes on each side. A little black char on the edges is good! Cut a thin slice off the garlic clove and rub one side of each piece of bread with the cut side of the garlic.
  5. Cut the bread into cubes and add to the cucumber mixture. Pour in the vinaigrette and toss to combine.