Salmon and Zucchini Burgers are tender and juicy atop a fresh watercress and blueberry salad. This recipe turns leftover salmon into an elegant 30 minute meal, and it’s the perfect way to stretch a delicious but pricey fish.
I’m committed to buying wild salmon these days, it’s healthier, cleaner, and more humane. Sadly, it’s also much more expensive, so since I’ve made that switch we’ve been eating less of our favorite fish. When I do splurge I want to make sure I make the most of my purchase. This time I flaked the leftover fish into a big bowl and lightly mixed it with shredded zucchini, a couple of beaten eggs, some cracker crumbs, and a little bit of this and that to make burgers. Fish or seafood cakes on top of a crisp salad has been one of our favorite summer meals since my kids were little. It’s something we can always agree on.
These are by nature very wet and loose before they’re coated with crumbs and cooked. Don’t worry about all the moisture, it ensures a tender burger. I measure them out with a 1/4 inch cup and form them into patties, them refrigerate until I’m ready to cook. This way you can do most of the work ahead of time.
I coat the patties generously with Ritz cracker crumbs and pan fry them in a little olive oil for about 4-5 minutes per side. They turn out beautifully, and we like to serve them piping hot over the cold greens. I always make some sort of flavored mayo or tartar sauce to go along with them.
I regret not showing you one of the burgers after it’s been cut into, because the texture is one of the nice things about them, the flaked salmon and zucchini make it nice and loose. The burgers hold together in the pan but fall part in your mouth!
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups flaked leftover salmon
- 1 cup shredded zucchini
- 6 scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts
- 1/2 cup cracker or bread crumbs (I used Ritz cracker crumbs)
- 3 Tbsp fresh dill leaves, finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
- 1 cup cracker or bread crumbs (I used Ritz cracker crumbs)
- tartar sauce
- sliced green onions
- lemon wedges
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 2 Tbsp relish
- 1 Tbsp prepared horseradish
- salt and pepper to taste
- Lightly beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl. Add the salmon, breaking apart any large chunks gently with your fingers as you add it.
- If your zucchini is very wet, squeeze out the excess moisture in a paper towel. I generally find that I don't have to do this. Add the zucchini, scallions, crumbs, dill, salt, and pepper to the bowl and mix gently but thoroughly.
- Use a 1/4 cup measure to scoop out the mixture and form into round patties. Set on a plate, cover well, and refrigerate until you are ready to cook.
- Coat the bottom of a skillet with olive oil and heat on medium until hot. Fry the patties for about 4-5 minutes on each side, until golden and crispy on the outside, and hot throughout. I use my spatula to flatten them slightly in the pan.
- Serve immediately on a bed of fresh greens, topped with the tartar sauce, more green onions, and a wedge of lemon.
- To make the sauce blend the ingredients together and taste to adjust to your liking.
- For this salad I used watercress, grape tomatoes, blueberries, red onion, and cucumber.
- I don’t know why but I love Ritz cracker crumbs with fish. I use my food processor to turn the crackers into crumbs. You’ll need about 2 sleeves of crackers for this recipe, give or take.
- Don’t coat the patties with crumbs until just before you fry them or the coating will get soggy.
- Of course use other types of leftover cooked fish — cod, halibut, tuna would all be good.