Thursday, March 8, 2012

Salmon Burgers & Pickled Red Onions

In case you're agoraphobic or haven't been on Facebook and seen all the weather related statuses, today was an absolutely gorgeous day.  A sun-glass-wearing, take-your-dog-to-the-park, break-out-your-sandals, driving-with-the-windows-down-and-radio-blaring, napping-on-a-blanket-in-your-backyard kind of spring day.
Peppermint and I at the park.
I picked my mom up from work, and we decided we were going to grab some takeout for dinner, but as we were driving home - the warm breeze reminded me so much of the beach I could practically taste the salt in the air - I was hit with the overwhelming feeling that this was the perfect night for a burger and an ice cold beer.

So, we stopped at Wegmans, grabbed some buns, salmon, and a six pack of River Horse Triple Horse Belgian-Style Ale.  I love River Horse Brewing Company because its local (run out of Lambertville, fifteen minutes from my house), it's all hand crafted, and it's wonderfully delicious and really cute boys work there.

Salmon burgers are the easiet thing in the entire world to make...besides a bowl of cereal.  They're a blank slate.  You can add whatever ingredients or flavors that you like - fresh herbs, dressings, marinades, veggies or just salt and pepper.  I made ours with a little pepper, garlic, and soy.

And hey, going to the store, buying ingredients, coming home and cooking took the same amount of time it would have taken to go to a Chinese joint, order, wait for the food, and bring it home.  No time lost in our last minute change of plans.  And we got beer.  So win-win.
Oh, and I've mentioned my obsession with Bobby Flay, right?  Okay, so my dad and I went through a huge Throwdown phase.  For those of you who aren't familiar with Throwdown, it's a show where Bobby finds a chef famous for one dish, challenges them with his version of that same dish, then local celebrity judges have a blind taste test and they choose the best dish.  It gets pretty intense, and the challenged chef's aren't always gracious when Bobby's dish gets voted best.  Point of this tirade is that Bobby Flay uses pickled red onions in as many dishes as he can: tacos, empanadas, potato salad, hot dogs, burgers, you name it.  The only thing he didn't put them on was his Coconut Cake (which is one of the best goddamn things I've ever tasted).  Anyway, I've been wanting to make them for a long time, so the other day I was bored and made them.  They ended up being super easy and ridiculously good, and I have since tried to work them into every dinner - fish tacos last night, salmon burgers tonight.  They're sweet and tangy, adding great flavor without overpowering.  They seem to compliment everything.  Basically, they're magic.

Bobby's Pickled Red Onions
1 cup red wine vinegar
½ cup lime juice
¼ cup water
3 tbs sugar
1 tbs salt
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced

+ In a small sauce pan, bring the vinegar, lime juice, water, sugar and salt to a boil. 
+ Remove from heat, let cool for ten minutes.
+ In medium bowl, cover the onions with the vinegar, then cover and refrigerate for at least four hours.

Note: Instead of a bowl, I used two mason jars, putting half of the onion in each and then sealing.

Salmon Burgers

1 lb wild-caught salmon, skin removed, cut into large chunks (ask your fish monger to do this for you)
4 tbs soy sauce
4 cloved garlic, roughly chopped

pepper to taste

+ Combine all ingredients in food processor and pulse until salmon is broken down, but remains chunky.

+ Form salmon into palm sized balls, and then flatten into patties.
+ Cook on grease skillet or grill for 5-7 minutes on each side, depending on size and thickness.  Or if you're cooking on a George Foreman, 6-8 minutes.  
Burger and Beer.  Beautiful.

1 comment:

  1. you are such a foodie. and writer. and photographer. I love your blog <3