Tuesday, April 5, 2011

salmon burgers with japanese coleslaw

Salmon burgers with Japanese coleslaw

I know what you're thinking.  Another Asian recipe?  I'm sorry, but I never get tired of Asian food.  When in doubt, wok it out.  (Rita, that was for you.)

I like salmon, but I don't buy it very often because the good stuff is expensive and I'm just a lowly peon trying to get by in this overpriced city.  The last time I was in Norfolk, my mom's friend Kelly was raving about Costco's salmon burgers, and I knew I had to give them a try!   On my next trip to the mega-warehouse, I beelined to the frozen foods section (because really, who has time to waste at Costco?) and picked some up.  At $15.99 for a twelve-pack, I was pleasantly surprised at how affordable they were.  At last, high-brow cuisine comes to the hoi polloi, via the most popular American dish ever created - the burger!  These babies have no breadcrumbs or other filler in them - I hate it when crabcakes and salmon burgers are loaded down with flavor-killers!  The only ingredients in this burger were salmon, water, canola oil, egg, and spices.

Best of all, these salmon burgers are good for our planet and good for our bodies; they're made from wild-caught Alaskan salmon, not the flavorless, nutritionally inferior, farm-raised Atlantic stuff that's injected with pink food coloring. Some of you may be surprised to see that comment coming out of my mouth.  I am skeptical of the words "organic", "cage-free", "range-free", "grass-fed", blah blah blah, and I do not consider myself a staunch proponent of those products.  Sure, I often buy cage-free eggs or an organic something or other because it may taste better or the price differential may be worth it to me, but a conventionally-grown vegetable is not a dealbreaker in my book.  One area where I always strive to go "natural" is salmon.  Salmon is already expensive to begin with, farmed or wild, so it's worth it (to me) to spend a few extra bucks for bigger flavor and more nutrients.

I quickly pan-seared the burgers for 4-5 minutes per side in just a hint of oil.  Then I splashed some soy sauce on top and put it on a "bun" - i.e. a whole wheat deli flat.  I don't buy hamburger buns if I'm just cooking for one or two because I don't go through them quickly enough, and moreover, I just don't love the taste of them.  I slathered some Duke's mayonnaise on both sides of the bread - I love mayonnaise!  I understand there are a lot of mayo-haters out there, but mayonnaise is my favorite condiment and I will never give it up.  If you don't like mayo, just leave it off.  This burger would be delicious with wasabi mayonnaise, but alas I didn't happen to have any wasabi casually laying around in my refrigerator. 

Finally, I topped each patty with a generous serving of Japanese coleslaw.  This is not a creamy coleslaw, but rather a vinegary, crunchy cabbage salad.  Simply delicious!

Japanese Coleslaw
Serves 4-6

For the slaw:
1 head cabbage, cored and shredded
1/4 cup sliced almonds
6 carrots, peeled and coarsely shredded
4 green onions, chopped (both white and green parts)
1 packet ramen noodles, uncooked and crumbled into small pieces

For the dressing:
2 tablespoons sugar (Splenda works too)
1/4 cup of canola oil or other flavorless vegetable oil
4 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
Spice packet from Ramen noodles (I used the "oriental" flavor)

1.  Mix together ingredients for the slaw
2.  Whisk together the ingredients for the dressing in a cup or small bowl.  Put in refrigerator to chill.
3.  When ready to serve, pour dressing over slaw and toss.

Oh, and before I leave, I'd like to wish a very  
Happy Birthday 
to my friend Lindsey!  
Linds, maybe 24 will be the year your head actually grows to a full-sized adult.  
Thank you for being such an amazing friend over the past 12+ years.

isn't her head so cute and tiny?

By this point, it's pretty apparent that Asian food is my Achilles heel.  What is your favorite cuisine?


  1. Kelly says thanks for the shout out. We've moved from Salmon Burgers to the even more flavorful Morningstar Black Bean Burger...see http://bit.ly/erV300 ... also found at Costco. Add avocado slices, southwest up your Duke's, lettuce, tomato, salt & pepper. You will Love them. Little Lew gives these two thumbs up! Kid Friendly!! She likes to add a slice of pepper jack cheese to really push the flavor over the top. Enjoy the blog. Keep up the good work.

  2. Bruce! I had no idea who "Braxton Hicks" was until this comment! I am so glad I know it's you now! I'll definitely try the black bean burgers. Tell Lulu I say hi and I miss her; I am glad y'all are enjoying the blog...makes me happy to know some people are reading (and liking) it! Take care and see you soon.

  3. p.s. but now that i see all the "lab rat" references....makes total sense.