The salmon croquettes made from canned salmon that you loved as a child are all grown up now. These Salmon Cakes have a wonderful texture; the crispy exterior gives way to a firm and tender interior. For cakes with the best texture, chop the fish by hand—a food processor will quickly turn the salmon into a paste. We prefer salmon from the tail of the fish, which is thinner than most fillets and also contains a little more fat for extra flavor. The buttermilk dressing comes together quickly, but can also be made ahead and kept in the refrigerator. Tasty drizzled over a grilled chicken or a roast beef sandwich, this dressing is the ideal accompaniment to salmon cakes and a fresh green salad. These Fresh Salmon Cakes with Buttermilk Dressing are perfect for a healthy lunch or a light dinner.
1 1/4 pounds skinless salmon fillet
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
7 tablespoons mayonnaise, divided
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp. panko (Japanese-style breadcrumbs)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon whole buttermilk
1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 head butter lettuce, torn
1/2 cup sugar snap peas, thinly sliced
1/2 cup thinly sliced radishes
How to Make It
Finely chop salmon on a cutting board; place in a medium bowl. Add chives, salt, pepper, and 4 tablespoons of the mayonnaise; stir to combine. Shape mixture into 8 (2 1⁄2-inch-wide) patties. Place breadcrumbs in a shallow dish. Place each patty in breadcrumbs; press to coat all sides.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add patties to skillet; cook until golden brown and internal temperature reaches 130°F, about 3 minutes per side. Remove from skillet.
Whisk together parsley, buttermilk, soy sauce, lemon juice, sugar, and remaining 3 tablespoons mayonnaise in a small bowl.
Divide lettuce, snap peas, and radishes evenly among 4 plates. Top each with 2 salmon cakes; drizzle with dressing.