Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Budget winner

With food prices getting higher and higher, it's always good to have a few budget meals in your repertoire. Canned salmon is among the cheapest proteins you can use, and there are plenty of things you can do with it. One simple option is salmon rissoles (p116), a recipe that bulks out the base protein with potato and a few other basic ingredients.

You start with mashed potato (so keep this one in mind if you have any leftover potato to use), and add the fish and liquid from a can of salmon, along with some chopped onion. To this mixture, sift in some flour and baking powder, then add seasoning and parsley (I used dried).

This results in a slightly sticky dough, firm enough to shape into patties. Then all you need to do is heat some oil in a pan and shallow fry until golden. I cooked mine in two batches, using quite a bit of oil for the first batch and much less for the second. Both batches came out well, so I would opt for minimum oil next time. It may even be possible to cook them on a sandwich press as we did with the corn fritters.

I threw together a salad while the rissoles were draining on paper towels, then sat down to eat. I'd expected the rissoles to be bland and boring, but actually, they were really tasty: crunchy on the outside with a soft, savoury centre. They weren't even particularly fishy, which was a surprise. I had a little mayonnaise with mine, though I think many Kiwis would reach for the tomato sauce instead.

One thing to bear in mind is that the main ingredients in the rissoles - salmon and mashed potatoes - don't need cooking, so the shallow frying really only heats them through and creates the crust on the outside. This works fine, but don't forget you have raw onion in there. So chop it finely, and if you're really anti raw onion, give it a zap in the microwave before adding it to the rissole mix.

So basically, this is a super-cheap, very easy meal that you can make with ingredients usually on hand in the cupboard. And, while it tastes pretty good the way it is, there's no reason why you couldn't add more seasoning or herbs, perhaps even some different vegetables, to adapt it more to your own tastes.


  1. A few years late, but a quick note to say I, too, was pleasantly surprised by this recipe - I've made it 3 times in the past several months (heaps of potatoes to get through) and each time my husband has complimented me on the "new" recipe. :)

  2. Hi Mary! You know, I'd competely forgotten about this one. Thanks for the remindere - must make it again sometime.


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