The Chicken Nuggets that Weren’t

Last night we had some old favorites at our house. I’m so familiar with salmon patties that I can practically cook them in my sleep. Nothing could go wrong with that, right? Um….yeah.

Although last night was relatively uneventful compared to most nights, I did manage to burn my fingers more than once and my pot of potatoes overflowed. By the time my children started asking for snacks, drinks, and dinner every two minutes, I was feeling my eye twitching every time they came into the kitchen. Then Ella, my three year old, walked in and said, “What are we having for dinner?” After my son told her salmon she immediately turned her nose up and started to whine. I quickly caught her attention and told her we were actually having “giant chicken nuggets” (which is exactly what my son thought they were until last year). It is slightly deceiving, but I go with whatever works!

Let’s get started! Here’s what you will need for the salmon patties. Well…and oil, but you get the drift. This recipe is very reasonable on the wallet.

A few important notes:

  1. Get boneless and skinless. If not, you’ll be like me the first time I made these and spend an hour trying to pick the minuscule bits of skin and bones out before just throwing it all away and screaming in frustration.
  2.  I have used different brands and noticed some of them need more or less cornmeal. Just be warned that all brands are different and what works for Double “Q” may not necessarily work for another brand (in terms of cornmeal amounts needed and such).

I mixed together two cans of salmon in medium-sized bowl. I always drain one and just dump in the second one with liquid and all. I added in two eggs and used a fork to mix the eggs and salmon together and then I added in the 1/4 cup of cornmeal and mixed well. Last night I added in an extra 1/8 cup. I usually know it’s “ready” when I push it all to one side of the bowl and it doesn’t automatically slide back into place.

After mixing them up, drop them by small spoonfuls into a skillet of hot oil. You can make bigger ones if you want. I vary on sizes.

It’s time to flip when they turn golden brown on the sides!

Once they are done, they should look like this on the inside:

As a side I also made cheesy smashed potatoes. I washed and sliced five UN-peeled potatoes and boiled them while I made the salmon patties. I then added a little milk, a Tbsp of butter, and a handful of cheese and mashed them up. The skin is just extra nutrients and it’s so much easier than peeling it. I also used my trusty Pampered Chef steamer (no, I don’t sell it- I just adore this product) to steam frozen broccoli in the microwave.

All in all it was a fast and easy dinner!Oh and my three year old still thinks we had chicken nuggets. And she ate every. last. one.

*Disclaimer: I make these pretty plain. You may want to add more seasonings, but we prefer them this way. This should be considered a base recipe by most.

Salmon Patties

  • 2 Cans of boneless, skinless Salmon- ONE drained (I prefer Double “Q”)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 C of cornmeal (may need an extra 1/8 C occasionally)
  • olive oil

Combine regular can of salmon and drained can. Add eggs. Mix together with a fork. Add in cornmeal and mix well. If needed, add extra cornmeal. Heat olive oil in skillet on medium to medium/high heat. Drop spoonfuls of salmon mixture into hot skillet. Turn patties when the edges turn golden brown. Once patties are done, move to a paper-towel covered plate to soak up any extra oil. Serve.

Cheesy Smashed Potatoes

  • 5-6 washed, un-peeled potatoes
  • 1 Tbsp Butter
  • 2-3 Tbsp milk
  • “handful” of shredded sharp cheddar cheese (real technical measurements here…)

Slice potatoes and add to a large pot of boiling water. Let potatoes boil until they are tender and easily mashed with  fork. Drain and return to pot. Add in milk and butter and mash by hand. After butter melts, add in a handful of cheese and hand mash.