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Salmon Burgers with Lemongrass and Ginger

Salmon Burgers with Lemongrass and Ginger | TENDING the TABLEWe just got back from our first camping trip of the season. We hiked through fields of gold and purple wildflowers and lounged in our hammocks by the river. It felt good to be outside breathing the pine scented air and reconnecting with the world around us. Spending time in nature fills me with so much gratitude; gratitude for a healthy body, for fresh, clean water, for bountiful food, and for companionship. Stepping away from the bustle of the city for just a few days allowed me to recognize the power of solitude, but also the indelible impact of community. It’s the people around us who shape our understanding of the world and inform our choices and inspire us. And it’s the farmers and fisherman who shape our understanding of the food on our tables.

Photo by Kimberley Hasselbrink

I developed this burger recipe for Drifters Fish, using their wild Copper River salmon. Every summer Nelly and Michael head to Cordova, Alaska to fish the Copper River. They fish sustainably, using a careful system of gillnetting and fishing only when the salmon population is thriving and plentiful. Every spring they sell shares of salmon through their community supported fishery which are then available for pick up in the fall after they return from Alaska. Nelly and Michael are not only passionate about sustainability, but also strive to build community and encourage consumers to #knowyourfisherman.

For these burgers I mixed in some lemongrass and ginger to brighten things up and added roasted red chili paste, cilantro cream and quick pickled cucumber and red onion for the perfect balance of flavors and textures. I think these burgers are pretty darn great and hope you like them too.

This post was sponsored by Drifters Fish. Thank you for supporting Tending the Table by supporting its sponsors. I truly believe in this company, their product and their mission. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Salmon Burgers with Lemongrass and Ginger

Serves 2



1 8-ounce salmon fillet

1 teaspoon salt

freshly cracked black pepper

2 stalks lemongrass

1/2 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled

zest and juice from 1 lime

1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon mayonnaise

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

3 tablespoons ground flax

3 tablespoons oil


1/2 cup rice vinegar

1/2 cup water

1 tablespoon coriander seeds

1 tablespoon peppercorns

1 tablespoon honey

1 cucumber, ribboned

1/4 red onion, thinly sliced


1/2 cup sour cream or creme fraiche

1/4 cup cilantro, minced

1/4 teaspoon salt

freshly cracked black pepper


2 burger buns, toasted

roasted red chili paste


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the salmon on a parchment lined baking sheet and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes until just cooked through, but still pink and moist.

Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, trim the lemongrass stalks, keeping only the bottom 3-4 inches. Remove the outer leaves and finely chop the tender core. Place the chopped lemongrass and ginger in a spice grinder and grind until it begins to form a paste. Add the lime zest and juice, mayonnaise and red pepper flakes and blend until combined. Transfer to a medium bowl. Once the salmon has cooled, break it into medium sized pieces, removing any bones and discarding the skin. Add the salmon and the ground flax to the bowl with the mayonnaise mixture and stir to combine.

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Shape the salmon cakes into patties about 4 inches in diameter and 1 inch thick. Fry until golden brown on both sides. Remove from the pan and place on a cooling rack.


Combine the vinegar, water, spices and honey in a small pot and gently bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat. Place the ribboned cucumber and red onion in a bowl and pour the warm vinegar over the top. Allow the cucumber and onion to pickle for 5 minutes before removing them from the liquid and setting aside.


Whisk together the sour cream, cilantro, salt and pepper.


Spread one half of each bun with the roasted red chili paste. Place a salmon burger on each bun and top with the cilantro cream and pickled cucumber and red onion. Enjoy!

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