Quick and easy salmon cakes with pesto
Canned wild salmon is the base for these fast, delicious salmon cakes. Serve them over mixed greens or with sauteed bell peppers and a piece of toasty focaccia.
Pink Salmon Cakes with Cilantro Pesto
2 6- to 7-ounce cans boneless, skinless wild Alaskan salmon, drained
1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs, preferably whole-wheat (see notes)
2 tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 teaspoon ground mace or nutmeg
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1 clove garlic, peeled
4 cups loosely packed cilantro leaves and tender stems
1/4 teaspoon salt
To prepare salmon cakes: Flake salmon into a bowl, removing any small bones or skin. Cut lemon in half; juice one half and cut the other half into 4 wedges. Add the lemon juice, breadcrumbs, mayonnaise, chopped cilantro and mace (or nutmeg) to the bowl. Mix gently with your fingers until well combined. Form into 4 patties 1 inch thick (use a scant 1/2 cup for each). Let sit for about 5 minutes to let the breadcrumbs absorb the flavor.
To prepare pesto: Meanwhile, place oil, almonds and garlic in a blender and pulse to combine. With the blender on medium speed, begin to add cilantro, a handful at a time. Continue, scraping down the sides, until all the leaves are pureed and you have a thick paste. Season with salt and set aside.
Heat butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until foaming. Add the salmon cakes and cook, gently turning halfway through, until golden on both sides, 5 to 6 minutes total. Adjust the heat and reshape the cakes as necessary.
Serve the salmon cakes with the pesto and a wedge of lemon.
Recipe notes: To make your own fresh breadcrumbs, trim crusts from whole-wheat bread. Tear bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. To make fine breadcrumbs, process until very fine. To make dry breadcrumbs, spread coarse or fine breadcrumbs on a baking sheet and bake at 250 degrees until dry, about 10 to 15 minutes. One slice of bread makes about 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs or about 1/3 cup dry breadcrumbs. For store-bought, coarse, dry breadcrumbs use panko breadcrumbs.
Per serving: 302 calories; 22 g fat (3 g saturated fat; 65 percent calories from fat); 8 g carbohydrates; 1 g sugar; 33 mg cholesterol; 469 mg sodium; 18 g protein; 1 g fiber.