I had this huge container of spinach I bought for some great recipe that I never made and so it was just sitting there on the bottom shelf in the fridge. Every time I opened the door I would see and think ” I need to do something with that spinach.” Finally the hour arrived when I just could not ignore that spinach anymore. If I did not use it today I was going to have to toss the whole package and I just hate to waste food. I could not remember what my original intention with the spinach was but I kept telling myself I should make pesto with it so that is what I started on at 3 o’clock on Saturday afternoon.
I had also been eyeing an appealing soup recipe in a magazine and decided, no time like the present, and started on that too. I soon realized that I did not have half the ingredients for the soup so I started replacing the items I didn’t have with what I did. I finished the soup first and that was rather bland and unexciting and I am pretty sure it was not related to the ingredients I did not have but will make it again just to be sure.
Maybe tomorrow it will be better, after the flavors mingle overnight.
I finished the pesto and still had no idea what I was going to make for dinner. The soup alone wasn’t going cut it and the pesto definitely needed something else. We can’t just eat pesto for dinner. At least I don’t think we can.
I could do pasta with pesto, but a plate filled with pasta alone, even with delicious freshly made pesto, does not excite me very much. I had chicken breast but what could I do with that at the last minute? It was already 5 o’clock. I needed something I could put together rather quickly and something that would go well with pesto.
I checked my cupboard to see what ideas sprung to mind…
How about salmon patties? That might be good with pesto. I try to keep a can of salmon in the cupboard in case of emergencies and for that occasion when I don’t have much time to put something together. I am not a pasta lover so although that may be easy meal for most it is not the first thing I think of when coming up with last minute meal ideas. And Ken usually wants to eat meat, or at very least, protein at almost every meal so the pasta with pesto was not going to be enough to satisfy either of us.
I got out the can of salmon and got to work . These are wonderfully satisfying and very easy to make. Salmon loaf was a regular meal at my house as a child. My parents came from the Midwest so salmon, canned, was the only fish we ate growing up. Well, Mom made perch which came frozen in a rectangular block. Perch nights were the worst. Blech! Watery, tasteless fish made more so because the only way my mom knew how to prepare it was baked with a little butter.
Nights we had salmon loaf were happy occasions. Although my mother’s recipe was simple and we did not use much in the way of condiments in our house the salmon was satisfying and to this day I kinda get a feeling of nostalgia when I make the patties.
Use the same salmon mixture to make a loaf, which is how my mother made it, or into patties. I prefer the look and versatility of the salmon patty. The browned sides slightly crisp when your knife slides through looks mouthwatering on your plate and the next day you can put a patty on a bun for a healthy sandwich. A loaf requires less actual preparation. You just dump the mixture into a loaf pan, smooth it out and stick it in the oven then bake for 20-30 minutes to nicely browned on top.
The pesto took about 10 minutes to prepare because you really just stuff everything into the food processor and pulse. I don’t even know why I put if so long really. Make these two recipes together or try them separately but do try them and let me know what you love to mix your pesto with when you do!
Spinach Pesto and Salmon Patties
- June 17, 2019
- 40 min
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- 3 c fresh spinach leaves
- 5 T olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/4 c chicken broth
- 1/4 c parmesan cheese
- 1/4 c whole walnuts
- Salmon Patties:
- 15oz can salmon (Red if available)
- 1/2 medium onion, minced
- 1 egg
- About 10 crackers, crushed (I like Ritz)
- flour for dusting
- Step 1
- To make the Pesto:
- Step 2
- Put the spinach, walnuts, cheese, broth and garlic cloves into food processor and pulse a couple times. Use spatula to scrape the sides and drizzle the oil over the mixture then process until smooth.
- Step 3
- To make the Patties:
- Step 4
- Open can of salmon and drain well.
- Step 5
- Pour contents into large bowl, add egg and onion and mix together thoroughly
- Step 6
- Add the crackers to salmon mixture and combine add more crushed crackers if your mixture does not stick together well enough to make into patties.
- Step 7
- Put 2-3 tablespoons of flour onto plate
- Step 8
- Take 1/4 -1/2 cup of mixture(depending how large you want your patty) and shape into round patty
- Step 9
- Dredge patty with flour pat to smooth over both top and bottom of patty . Tap off extra flour and set patty aside to be cooked. Repeat until no salmon mixture remains.
- Step 10
- Heat 2-3 tablespoons oil in pan. Place patties in pan and cook about 5 minutes per side. Both sides should be nicely browned