Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Salmon Cakes & Scones

Tonight, I'd planned to make chile verde for supper, but by the time I got home, it was too late for a dish that takes 2 hours of cooking. So, it was on to salmon cakes, which are quick, easy, and scrumptious! The Rachael Ray recipe upon which I based my version calls for putting the salmon cakes on the salad, but I thought it would be better with the salad as a side. I also didn't bother buying the various pieces of the green salad base, instead picking up an organic spring mix salad. It worked nicely, cut prep time, and cost a lot less than buying 4 different kinds of greens. It's also a lot less wasteful for our 2-person household. The recommended accompaniment was rosemary & ham scones, which I made just like the recipe told me to make them, aside from switching biscuit mix brands because the store didn't have Jiffy. I am not much of an improviser when it comes to baking. They are truly stellar. I found the recipes in Rachael Ray's Around the Clock Cookbook, which has a bunch of other great dinners in it. A side of a favorite summer fruit (I am pretty mad for stone fruits & cherries) is a good dessert.

Salmon Cakes
1 can salmon (I get skeeved out by the little backbone thingie & the skin and remove it, but you don't have to)
1 egg white
A heaping 1/8th cup of Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs (the dry sort---and if you don't have seasoned ones, you can also toss in a smidge of oregano & basil, instead)
1 heaping tsp. seasoned salt (the original recipe calls for Old Bay---mine had gone rock hard)
A few drops of hot sauce
1-2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley (Italian or flat-leaf is my preference here)
A good grinding of black pepper
1 tbsp. oil

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Mix everything but the oil together well. Heat oil in cast-iron skillet on medium heat. Form salmon into 2 patties and cook a minute or two on each side, to brown. Pop the skillet into the oven to bake about 8 more minutes. Serves 2.

Green Salad with Orange and Red Onion
1 bag/container spring salad mix
1 orange, peeled & chopped (if you're making the scones, zest the orange first)
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
3 tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tbsp. grapefruit balsamic vinaigrette (you can leave this out---I had it on hand)
1/4 c. good quality, extra-virgin olive oil (I look for "first cold press" on the bottle)
Salt & pepper

Mix the greens with the orange and onion. Whisk the oil into the vinegar. Dress and toss salad.
Season. Serves 4-6.

Rosemary & Ham Scones
1 package buttermilk biscuit mix (the size that makes 4 or 5 large or 7 or 8 small biscuits. I used Bisquick)
3 tbsp. finely-chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 c. heavy cream
A pinch of salt
2 oz. diced ham (I buy the pre-diced sort and use the rest of the package in eggs, quiche, or what-have-you later in the week)
Zest of 1 orange (she actually directs you to use 1 tbsp)
A little sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix everything but sugar. Make 4 large or 8 small mounds of pressed-together dough on an ungreased baking sheet. Sprinkle with sugar and bake 10-12 minutes for large scones or 7-8 minutes for small ones. I was tempted, by the way, to omit the sugar & wasn't at all sure how I felt about the orange zest. They really made for a lovely contrast and I highly recommend them, even if you generally don't favor sweet with meat. I am looking forward to having a second one with a piece of fruit for breakfast!

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