Ginger

Sunday, April 15, 2012


I think ginger is the perfect ingredient.

Ginger has a heat and an indescribable kick that are unbeatable.  My favourite cookies as a child were my Grandma Baker's ginger snaps.  One of my best food memories of our trip to China was the ginger chicken we ate with our friends, the Jay family.  Add ginger to your cooking and you'll bestow it with the grace of Ginger Rogers and the smarts of Ginger Pye.

I regularly keep three kinds of ginger in my house.  Ground ginger in my spice cupboard (well, everyone has that), fresh ginger in my vegetable drawer (often useful for savory dishes), and candied ginger in my cupboard (perhaps not a necessity, but it makes me happy just knowing it’s there).  I’m not sure everyone regards ginger as a household staple in the way I do, but a week rarely goes by when I don’t use it in at least one of its forms.

This was a week when I used all three in a variety of recipes.  And the fresh ginger worked beautifully in a sauce to accompany these salmon cakes.  I love Ellie Krieger’s cookbook, The Food You Crave, and I think its title is perfect.  I’m amazed at how I crave the gorgeous, and healthy, recipes that are contained within.

Especially the ones that use ginger.



Salmon Cakes with Ginger-Sesame Sauce
(from The Food You Crave, by Ellie Krieger.)

Note: This recipe makes twelve large salmon cakes.  I halved it when I made it.

5 slices whole-wheat sandwich bread
Two 15-ounce cans salmon, drained and picked over for skin and bones
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
5 green onions (white and green parts)
1/2 cup canned water chestnuts, drained and finely chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 tsp olive oil
Ginger-Sesame Sauce (recipe below)

Tear the bread into pieces and process in a food processor until you get fine bread crumbs.  In a large bowl, flake apart the salmon with a fork.  Add the eggs and mix well.  Finely chop 4 of the green onions and add to the bowl.  Add the water chestnuts, cilantro, pepper and bread crumbs and mix well.  Shape the mixture into 12 patties.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat half the oil over medium heat.  Add 6 patties and cook for 5 minutes on each side.  Transfer the cooked patties to a plate and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.  Add the remaining oil to the pan and cook the rest of the salmon cakes in the same way. 

Chop the remaining green onion.  Serve the salmon cakes with the sauce on the side, garnished with the onion.

Ginger-Sesame Sauce

1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt, or 6 Tbsp plain Greek-style nonfat yogurt
2 Tbsp mayonnaise
1 1/2 Tbsp peeled and grated fresh ginger
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp low-sodium soy sauce

If using regular yogurt, place the yogurt in a strainer lined with a paper towel.  Set the strainer over a bowl and let drain and thicken for 30 minutes.

Place the drained or Greek-style yogurt in a small bowl.  Add the mayonnaise, ginger, sesame oil and soy sauce and whisk until smooth.

45 comments:

Bonnie said...

Beth, Ginger is also popular in our home. I have been known to put packages of candied ginger in Christmas stockings. Thanks for the salmon cake recipe. Home-made gingersnaps have long been our favorite cookie. Hope you are having a wonderful weekend. Bonnie

Jemi Fraser said...

I don't use ginger as often as I should - there's something about the smell that just lightens my mood! :)

Ruth said...

Oh it's one of my faves too! I recently replaced raisins with candied ginger in a muffin recipe and they were VERY popular!

Beth said...

Great idea, Bonnie! I'd love to find candied ginger in my stocking too.

sally said...

I'm a big fan of ginger too! I recently had a ginger and mint cocktail that was fantastic.

Valerie said...

You made me realize that I need to use ginger more often. Thank you. :D

Your salmon cakes sound amazing, especially with that ginger-sesame sauce!

Gloria said...

what nice recipe Beth! I love ginger!

Kayte said...

Love, love, love this recipe of Ellie's and I love all her books and recipes, so much good in all of them. Ginger is always a big hit here as well...have to have all the kinds all the time on hand. It's surprising how many things it finds its way into around here. My Grandma Baker was known for her cookies as well...we called her Granny Baker, until my boys were little and they mixed the two when they were very little and called her always Granny Cookie Baker...to this day that is how we always refer to her around them. Sweet memories, thanks for a trip down memory lane...and for showcasing Ellie's recipes. xo

Claire Davis said...

This looks like my kind of meal! I love ginger and salmon, the cakes looks so delicious. I will have to try this.

Beth said...

Kayte, I always love hearing about your Grandma Baker! If I'd thought of calling mine Granny Cookie Baker, I would have done so too.

Neesie said...

I agree Beth, it's a favourite here too.
I have it in all its various forms in my kitchen.
Your recipe looks delicious...I'm away today to bake a Ginger and Treacle cake. Well that is if I can fit it into the schedule. I can smell it now...Mmmm :D

Simply Life said...

oh these look amazing- I really need to start using fresh ginger more!

Miriam said...

I love ginger too! That sauce sounds awesome :), Miriam@Meatless Meals For Meat Eaters

Belinda said...

Fantastic! I also always keep ginger - always the perfect zing, not to mention so good for you!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Oooooh! Yummy! I'm coping this recipe. :D

Kitchen Riffs said...

Oh, I love ginger in all its forms. This is a really nice pantry staples recipe - I have everything on hand! And I haven't made salmon (or fish) cakes for quite awhile. Hmmmm . . . ;-) Thanks for the inspiration!

bakewithjill.com said...

I have that cookbook and I love it. I haven't noticed this recipe, but I think it needs to go on my list of things to make!

Cindy said...

I too am a fan of all types of ginger. Ginger--in all it's forms is a staple in my kitchen. I love Dorie Greenspans ginger cookies and have made them many times.
This looks like a fun recipe--the sauce must be delicious.

Carol said...

I love ginger! I've never made salmon cakes but I love the flavor in yours, I need to try these. They look delicious.

Sue said...

My husband's favorite cookies are "ginger sparkles"(YUM!), and he seems to love ginger in all forms. Salmon is a favorite of ours too. I'll have to try this flavorful recipe.

Loveforfood said...

i love ginger.. would love to try it out.

Mary said...

I have just about fallen in love with ginger over the past year. While it might not ever be my favorite ingredient, it is used frequently in my home. These cakes sound delicious!

Claudia said...

Every time I cook with ginger, I find the aroma intoxicating. This is a totally new way to use salmon - and as it is my husband's love, I will need to save this - just delightful.

Sissi said...

The salmon cakes sound delicious. I think I couldn't live without ginger (especially the fresh one because I use it almost every day!), so I totally understand your passion for this extraordinary ingredient.

Angie's Recipes said...

Me too a ginger fan. I remember I had some ginger bonbons before..it was so delicious.

Katerina said...

Ginger root has many powerful and good ingredients for our organism plus it tastes great. These patties look mouthwatering and the ginger sauce I am sure it enhanced their taste.

Lizzy said...

Your salmon cakes sound so wonderful, Beth, especially with the ginger sauce.

nancy at good food matters said...

Hi Beth--call it ginger serendipity, I just posted about this wonder root too. (mine is a ginger-grapefruit simple syrup) The sauce for the salmon cakes looks terrific.

(I love to nibble on candied ginger)

julie said...

I love ginger almost as much as I love garlic; it's a necessity in cooking! I could seriously go for one of these cakes right now. This is a delectable recipe Beth!

LDH said...

I appreciate you sharing this recipe. I have tried to like salmon as well as other fish but it is not always pleasant for me. I like shellfish and crab cakes so I am think this recipe might be a good one for me to make. The sauce sounds very nice!

gobakeyourself said...

Ginger is most definitely one of my favourite ingredients- in cakes, cookies even frosting :D
But I have never tried in sauce - your recipe looks like an incredible one to begin with!
Veggie patties, here I come :)

Cheers
Choc Chip Uru

Yummy said...

My mother bought a whole ginger root for me the last time she was here, and I haven't used it yet. It looks great in this dish.

Needful Things said...

I'm a huge ginger fan & this sounds just wonderful. Can't wait to try it.

Elaine said...

Ginger is an ingredient that I have to use sparingly at my house because it is not liked by all, but I do usually just cut the amount that a recipe calls for. I am sure it is great in a savory dish like your salmon cakes.

grace said...

there aren't many spices that can pull double duty like ginger and be appropriate in both sweet and savory applications. great recipe!

sweetandcrumby.com said...

I would definitely crave those salmon cakes. I adore ginger. Whether it's pickled, sauteed, candied...you are so right that it can just go anywhere and add umph to a dish. These salmon cakes look perfect for a spring meal. Have a great week Beth!

Cucina49 said...

Oh, wow. This takes salmon cakes to a whole new level. These look wonderful!

Joanne said...

Ginger is one of my favorite ingredients as well! Though I can't keep candied ginger around because I'll eat it. In one sitting. These salmon cakes sound so tasty! I love any and all ginger-full meals.

Rita said...

Love ginger so this is a must try recipe. A few weeks ago I had some kind of bug and was so nauseated; I remembered reading about ginger. I chewed on some candied ginger and it made me all better. Now I make sure I keep some in my cupboard and tell everyone about my discovery.
Rita

bittersweetblog said...

Ginger lovers, unite! There are so few things that it -doesn't- go with, I have a hard time understanding anyone who doesn't love that spicy flavor.

momto8 said...

thank you for these recipes. I am not a big ginger lover...I guess because I only used it when I was pregnant to help with the nausea..which didn;t help..so i still have those mental associations!
I am your newest follower..pls follow back if you can.
I may just try this recipe though...easy enough!!

profiterolesandponytails said...

Ginger is an ingredient that I could cook with more often -- especially the candied version. When you make your own breadcrumbs do you not need to toast the bread? Surprisingly this is something I've never made.

comfortablydomestic.com said...

The salmon cakes sound so bright and fresh, but the ginger sauce sounds like it would be lovely on just about anything. Ginger makes everything better.

Rachel said...

i am obsessed with ginger too but usually just use it in sweets--i should put it in savory recipes more often! might have to give this one a try.

Medeia Sharif said...

I don't keep ginger in the house, but I love to order food at restaurants that have it. I love the flavor.

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