RECIPES: Recipe Details

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Pacific Northwest Salmon Burger with Spicy Cherry Ginger Glaze and Fennel-Sprout Slaw

My husband and I spent summer of 2007 living in beautiful Portland, Oregon and we both really came to love the Pacific Northwest during our stay. I gained a huge appreciation for the emphasis that Portland's restaurants and cooks place on supporting locally grown, Oregonian products. While I lived in Portland, did my best to sample as much Pacific Northwest produce as I could, and this recipe reflects some of my favorite flavors. The cherries, fresh herbs, vegetables, salmon, and even the whole wheat bun all call to mind the distinctive flavors of Pacific Northwest cuisine and make for a burger that is both healthy and delicious.

Ingredients 

For the Fennel-Sprout Slaw:

1 fennel bulb, very thinly sliced
3 cups bean sprouts
¾ cup chopped pecans
¼ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup Green Goddess salad dressing (store bought)
1 tablespoon sour cream
Salt and pepper to taste

For the Spicy Cherry-Ginger Glaze:

8 ounces cherry preserves
The juice of one lime
1 tablespoon minced ginger
2 tablespoons good quality balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

For the Salmon Patties:

1 tablespoon sour cream
2/3 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1 egg
3 tablespoons chopped watercress
1 ½ teaspoons fennel seed
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
2 teaspoons salt
¾ tablespoon pepper
2 lbs. skinless salmon fillets

6 Oat-Wheat Hamburger Buns
Vegetable oil, for brushing on the burgers and the grill rack (grilling non-stick spray is fine as well)

Instructions 

For the fennel-sprout slaw: In a large mixing bowl, combine the sliced fennel, sprouts, and pecans. In a separate small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, salad dressing, and sour cream. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the mayonnaise-mustard mixture over the slaw mix and toss well, ensuring the all of the dry ingredients are evenly coated with the dressing.

For the glaze: In a small bowl, combine the cherry preserves, lime juice, ginger, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and cayenne. If necessary, thin the mixture out with a little water. Stir until all of the ingredients are evenly incorporated.

For the patties: Preheat a gas grill to medium-high. To make the patties, combine the sour cream, Panko, egg, watercress, fennel seed, Dijon, orange juice, salt, pepper, and salmon in a food processor. Process the mixture just until everything is well combined and the salmon is fully ground. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions, being careful not to over-handle the salmon, and form 6 patties to fit the buns. Brush some of the cherry ginger glaze onto each side of the patties. When the grill is ready, brush the rack with vegetable oil (or spray with non-stick spray), and place the patties onto the rack. Cover the grill and cook until the patties have lightly browned on the bottoms, about 3 minutes. Turn the patties, brush with more of the glaze, and cook until just opaque through the center, about 3 - 4 more minutes. During the last few minutes of cooking, place the buns, cut-side down, on the outside of the grilling rack to lightly toast.

To assemble the salmon burgers, place an equal portion of the slaw onto the bottom halves of each bun. Top the slaw with a salmon patty finish with the bun tops. Serve right away and enjoy with a glass of Oregon Pinot Noir.

Makes 6 burgers.