Random Salmon

Posted on April 23, 2015. Filed under: Main Course | Tags: , , , , |

I was working at Tommy B’s on Monday, and one of my Bdub’s bar regulars came in, saw me and said “You work here to?” And I told him I did. After a few long islands, he kept exclaiming “Rachel! You’re interesting!” I wasn’t even talking to him..so…thanks? He came up to me on his way to the bathroom and said “Working two jobs, probably a single mom taking care of stuff” I told him no. I don’t really NEED two jobs; my bills are minimal and the cats are a lot cheaper than children. I work because I like to be busy. My whole life up until I graduated college was always busy; I felt that I never had time to myself but I kind of liked it. Once I got out of school and was only working and picking up shows here and there; I suddenly had a ton of time. Once they started cutting hours down at Bdubs, I had WAY to much time. (Really the problem is that I had off days that my friends didn’t) so I picked up the second job. That being said, we’re getting into the slow time at Bdubs and the busy time at Tommy Bs. That means one thing: I’ll be working more at both jobs. Why? I guess two people are leaving Tommy Bs so their schedule is opening up, and EVERYONE calls/asks off at Bdubs once it starts getting warm. (Ok, not this week, but you get the idea) This week I went from having 2 shifts at Tommy Bs and 4 at Bdubs to 1 at Tommy Bs and 7 at Bdubs. My day off went from today to yesterday and I’m about to have two doubles in a row.

That’s not that big of a deal; I love it, but now since I’ve been avoiding processed foods eating there 2 days in a row is a terrible idea. I’ve been bringing fruit and my smoothies to work on those days, but that doesn’t really fill me up for long anymore. I wish it does, but my metabolism is crazy fast now so that doesn’t fill me up for more than half an hour.

My original plan for today was to make salmon burgers for dinner with ciabatta rolls and take it easy. I ended up being part of a focus group that was catered, so my original plan was out. HOWEVER I bought the salmon fresh yesterday and I had started the biga (ciabatta starter) last night so I need to cook it before everything went bad. (Last thing you want is to waste $10 on good fish). So I decided to prep everything so I could just come home and eat a quick dinner, or even bring small parts to work with me that would warm up quickly.

Now, I have never made any of these things until today. I used black olives, I can barely stand any olives except for black olives. That being said, the inital products turned out very well and I’m excited to eat them for dinner for the next few days!

Salmon Burger on Homemade Chibatta with Mediterranean Pico de Gallo

Here’s what to get from the store:

Salmon
Fresh Dill
Dijon mustard
Black olives
Roma Tomatoes
Lemons
Feta Cheese
Scalions
Yeast
Fresh basil

Ciabatta Rolls
(From The Kitchn)

Biga

4 ounce (1/2 cup) water
1/2 teaspoon active-dry yeast
5 ounce (1 cup) all-purpose flour

  1. Dissolve the yeast in the water. Add the flour and stir to form a thick, gloppy paste. Give it a good fifty or so brisk stirs to build up the gluten. Cover and let sit at room temperature eight hours or overnight.
  2. By the next day, the biga will look soupy with many big bubbles dotting the surface.

Ciabatta

17 ounces (2 cups + 2 tablespoons) water
1 teaspoon active-dry yeast
Biga
20 ounces (4 cups) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons kosher salt

  1. Dissolve the yeast in the water in the bowl of a standing mixer. Scrape the biga into the water and break it up with your spatula or squeeze it between your hands. You don’t need to completely dissolve the biga; just loosen it up and break it into stringy blobs.
  2. Add all of the flour and the salt. Stir to form a thick, very wet dough. Let this rest for 10-20 minutes to give the flour time to absorb the water.
  3. Fit your standing mixer with a dough hook and knead at medium speed for 15-18 minutes (Level 5 or 6 on a KitchnAid). Keep a close eye on your mixer as it has a tendency to “walk” on the counter at this speed.
  4. The dough will start off sticking to the bottom and sides of the bowl. Around the 7-minute mark, it will start to pull away from the sides of the bowl, collect around the dough hook, and regularly slap the sides of the bowl. If it doesn’t, nudge your mixer speed up a notch. Also, if the dough starts climbing the dough hook, stop the mixer and scrape it down again. By the end of kneading, the dough will look smooth and creamy with a glossy shine. It will puddle back into the bowl once you turn off the mixer, and this is fine.
  5. Cover the bowl and let the dough rise at 70° – 75° for 2-3 hours, until tripled in bulk.
  6. Dust your work surface heavily with flour. Set two sheets of parchment near your work surface. Scrape the dough out of the bowl onto the flour, taking care not to deflate it too much. Dust the top of the dough with more flour. Using a pastry scraper or pizza wheel, cut the dough in two pieces for loaves or into 16 pieces for rolls.
  7. Brush your hands with flour. Working gently but swiftly, scoop the the loaves (or the rolls) one at a time from the work surface to the parchment. Press your fingertips about halfway into the dough to dimple the surface and slightly flatten the loaves (or rolls). Let the loaves (or rolls) rise, uncovered, for 30-40 minutes. When ready to bake, they should look pillowy with many big bubbles just beneath the surface.
  8. Preheat the oven to 475°F while the loaves are rising. If you have a baking stone, put it in the oven now.
  9. When ready to bake, slide the loaves, still on the parchment, onto a pizza peel or baking sheet. Transfer them to the oven to cook, either on the baking stone or directly on the baking sheet if you don’t have a stone. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until puffed and golden brown. Slip the parchment out from under the loaves and cool completely before eating.

Salmon Burgers

1 1/4 pound salmon, skinned and deboned
2 tbsp dijon mustard
1 tbsp mayo
1 clove garlic
2 scallions, diced
Fresh Dill
Zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt, pepper, cayenne

  1. Take some of the salmon and cut into chunks, about 1/4 pound or so. Take the rest of it and put it in the food processor with the mustard, mayo, garlic, scallions, lemons and seasonings. Blend until it is a thick paste and mix into the chunked salmon. Set in the fridge for at least a half an hour.
  2. Pre heat your cast iron skillet (or regular skillet if you don’t have cast iron) with some olive oil. For the salmon mixture into patties and cook a few at a time, browning on both sides. If you are eating right away, cook a little longer, but not too long so you don’t dry them out.
  3. Transfer to a paper towel to soak up the grease. Serve on ciabatta with Greek pico and whipped lemon feta (recipes below)

Greek “Pico”

2 1/2 roma tomatoes, chopped
1 small can diced black olives
1 small block feta (I got a .67 pound container of feta, and used 1 block)
Dill
Juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper

  1. Mix all together in a bowl and taste to adjust seasonings. Serve with pita chips or on top of a Greek style burger.

Lemon Whipped Feta

1/2 pound Feta
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
Dill
Splash of heavy cream

  1. Put feta and lemon in a mixer with the whisk attachment and mix until the feta is in small chunks. Add enough heavy cream do moisten the cheese then add the dill. Whip until creamy, add salt and pepper to taste.

I tend to stay towards more of an Italian style of flavoring, so I’m not sure why I decided to go Greek this time around, but it is a refreshing flavor profile.

It’s funny to me how many people think I’m vegetarian still, but I guess it makes sense considering I almost never eat meat. I like meat, I just don’t like the price tag. This shopping trip was the most expensive I’ve had in a while, and it was because of the salmon (and the beer) that I bought. Everything else was pretty cheap. Granted, I’m not going to need to go shopping for a while (but, I have a gift certificate I need to use in a week so…I’ll be going soon. )

Do something random, who knows, you make like it!

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One Response to “Random Salmon”

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[…] is super easy, and the taziki and lemon whipped ricotta are the same that I used when I made the salmon burgers a few months ago. My only wish was that the quesidillas weren’t a messy as they were, but the […]


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