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Smoked salmon potato cakes

August 13, 2011

It’s not often that I buy smoked salmon for cooking with, since the cost of a decent packet usually exceeds the cost of an entire meal. Not that this has stopped me buying cheese in the same way…but you can always get your smoked salmon fix at a cafe, whereas no where really shells out for decent cheese…there is however a point to all of this. These potato cakes. I don’t understand why more places don’t make smoked salmon potato cakes. You need very little smoked salmon (I painstakingly took the meat off some wings from Akaroa Salmon), but the flavour of the salmon permeates the cakes for a rich, decadent bite of fluffiness.

Now that I have your attention, I best be honest: I do know why cafes don’t make these. They fall apart, as you can plainly see, and that’s hardly going to pay for itself. I assure you your taste buds will be too busy thanking you for the effort though.  Studded with spring onion (salmon’s best friend), a touch of mustard (only if it’s kicking around though), and pan fried in a mixture of butter and oil, there is no way these can be bad. Given this is rather rich, a lemony salad ought to seal the deal. Mine just sat next to a simple baby sorrel (sub: spinach, with extra lemon juice) and red cabbage salad tossed with lemon mustard dressing. The dressing that dribbled onto the plate was also great for dipping bits of potato cake in. Yegads, I’m drooling just thinking about it.

Smoked salmon potato cakes

Makes about eight 8×1.5cm cakes. To say this serves any more than two is an utter lie. They are that good.

  • a handful of good hot smoked salmon, torn up*
  • 2 large potatoes, washed and cut into 1″ chunks (I don’t peel mine, but you can if you really want to)
  • 1 egg
  • a few Tbs finely chopped fresh spring onion (scallions/green onion)
  • about 1 tsp dijon or wholegrain mustard, or 1/2 tsp dry ground mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • butter and oil for pan frying
Boil potatoes until tender (a knife inserted should barely meet any resistance, and should slip back out again easy). Drain and mash roughly (a few lumps are fine).
While the potatoes are boiling, beat egg and mustard, then add salmon, spring onion, and some salt and pepper. Mix in the mashed potato, which will become substantially wetter. Taste, and season with more salt if needed.
Heat a fairly generous amount of oil and a sliver of butter on medium heat until the butter starts foaming. Tilt the pan to mix the oils, then add heaping tablespoons (the kind you eat with, not the measuring kind) of potato cake mixture to the pan. Let cook until the undersides are browned, then flip and cook on the other side until brown. Don’t worry if they break up. Seriously. There are worse things happening in the world.
Place cooked potato cakes in a 100C (210F) oven while you cook the rest.
If not making a refreshing salad to accompany, at least serve with a wedge of lemon. You could also add some cooked peas to the cakes for a bit of extra greenery. Or serve alongside asparagus when spring rolls around.

Lemony winter-friendly salad

  • red cabbage (the bits close to the centre preferably), finely sliced
  • young sorrel leaves or baby spinach
  • juice of half a lemon
  • twice the amount of lemon juice in olive oil (pref extra virgin)
  • salt and pepper to taste
Whisk lemon juice, oil and salt and pepper together until the dressing thickens a little. Sprinkle over leaves and mix.

*I take the meat off salmon wings, and save the bones for seafood soup. Having said that, I haven’t yet made soup with it, but you can just freeze the bones.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. August 14, 2011 8:34 am

    I know what you mean about the cost of, well any fish here, but this looks worth the indulgence. Winter-friendly sounds great right about now too.

  2. August 14, 2011 9:03 am

    They sounds delicious and perfect with a refreshing salad.

  3. August 14, 2011 1:17 pm

    R: Yeah, have been trying to buy fish whole and use the bits that most people don’t like to buy. It does create a bit more work though!

    A: They are indeed…although I can think of a few people who would have no qualms eating them on their own :D

  4. August 14, 2011 3:33 pm

    These sound wonderful, love salmon and potatoes and how it is bright and light, but comforting all at the same time :)

  5. August 15, 2011 2:37 am

    These look delightful!

    BTW – I invited you to join-in The Seven Links Challenge, it is a great way to connect blogs and highlight favorite older posts. Would love to see your highlights :)

  6. August 15, 2011 7:26 am

    Yegads! Hee :)
    I think I’ve mentioned before that I’m not so good with small cakes that need to be fried, but I do love the sound of these. Would be good for using up some leftover mashed potatoes, too (it can happen!)
    I love sorrel so much, alas the slugs got to mine before I could actually eat that much of it.

  7. August 15, 2011 1:23 pm

    M: They’re comforting alright! Heheh….not so sure on the “light” front. Then again I’m not on a diet so “light” should really just refer to flavour.

    J: Thanks!

    H: Yeah…and these do fall apart quite easily, but meh, they’re not exactly meant to be pretty! It would indeed be excellent for leftover mashed potatoes! I’m such a glutton though, they never seem to last >.< That's a shame the slugs got to your sorrel, I've never seen them that bothered down here. You could plant some bok choi in amongst it as a sacrificial crop (as wrong as that sounds), the slugs go mad for that!

  8. August 17, 2011 5:35 pm

    These sound divine. Cured salmon and potatoes are just such a great combo but never thought to put the salmon inside!

  9. August 18, 2011 6:23 pm

    J: Hehe, I tend to try to put everything in a fritter at some point.

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