The idea for these Asian-influenced salmon burgers came to me when I was thinking of what to do with a leftover knob of ginger. I had never made fish based burgers before, and I was a little wary of my audience, but decided I could rely on unconditional love to make this meal a success. After both plates were clean (even my mom’s), my parents asked if I would make the salmon burgers again the next time I cooked. Success indeed. Makes 3 burgers
1 lb skinless salmon fllet
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
1 garlic clove, pushed through a press
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp cilantro
1 bunch scallions, trimmed
Whisk together the mustard, mayonnaise, ginger, garlic, lemon juice, and cilantro. Season with salt and a pinch of cayenne. Taste for seasoning, and add more heat if necessary.
Finely chop the salmon filet. Toss together with the mustard mixture and form into four even patties, making sure to pack the rounds together as tight as possible.
Place burgers on a plate, cover with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour, and up to six. NOTE: you can make the sauce the night before, but don’t add the fish until the day of. The acid in the lemon juice will cure the salmon like a ceviche if combined for a long period of time.
Heat a nonstick skillet over a high flame and coat the bottom with a thin layer of olive oil. When the pan is very hot, add the salmon burgers. Cook the burgers until brown and crispy on both sides.
Make sure not to flip the burgers too early—they are fragile and need to be nearly cooked through on the first side in order to turn without breaking.
In the meantime, heat a grill pan over high heat. Drizzle a little olive oil on a large plate and roll the scallions around until they are coated with oil. When the pan is hot, add the scallions. Rotate as necessary until the green stalks have wilted and the white stems have beautiful dark brown grill marks.
Serve the burgers, with or without toasted buns, and pile the grilled scallions on top.