Bob Hart’s recipe for the ultimate Asian salmon burger
THE ULTIMATE SALMON-BURGER
If you have never made a salmon-burger, it’s your loss. But if you have never made one of these Asian salmon-burgers – SHAME, SHAME, SHAME…
They are deliciously easy, as well as being deliciously delicious. And while I doubt that there is any such thing as a mediocre salmon-burger, given the excellence of our home-grown fish, these are clearly at the top of the tree.
I make them, routinely, with the off-cuts from a large, fresh salmon fillet from which I have sliced a loin to convert into hot-smoked salmon, or center-fillets for grilling on a cedar plank. And while I adore both of those dishes, sometimes I think the burgers I make from the glorious off-cuts and grill the following day are every bit as wonderful.
Cut your skinned off-cuts if you have them, or about 500-600g of skinned fresh salmon, into chunks and quickly pulse, just once or twice, in a food processor to make a coarse mince. Transfer to a large bowl.
Add about 2tbs of minced or pressed (a garlic press works well) peeled fresh ginger with its juices. Add 1tbs pressed garlic and two finely chopped spring onions, including about 4-5cm of their green tops, 3tbs chopped coriander leaves, 3tsp sea salt, juice of half a lemon and 2tbs soy sauce. Add about ¾ cup of Panko (Japanese) breadcrumbs and mix well.
Divide the mixture into four equal portions, shape each into a fat patty, sit them on a platter and refrigerate for at least half an hour to set them – longer if you have the time.
Now, oil each patty lightly with EV olive and grill each for 3 minutes a side on a clean, hot (200C) grill – flipping after a 90 seconds, again after another 90, flipping and turning through 90 degrees after another 90 seconds and flipping after another 90. Now, lift the handsomely grill-marked patties off the grill onto a warm plate and loosely tent with foil.
Lightly toast four burger buns – brioche if you can find them – and lightly spread with wasabi mayo made by stirring a few squirts of wasabi in a tube into a quantity of Best Foods or Kewpie mayo to taste. Position a patty on the base of each bun, top with a few slices of dill pickle and perhaps a couple of potato crisps to add crunch.
Replace the top of the bun. Eat. Rejoice.