Better Classic Than Never

September 25, 2010

Project Food Blog submission #2 is due when!?!?! Today’s reminder email told me I had to think fast.  I actually had a whole other idea for entry #2 but that has now been tossed out with the bathwater.

Luckily I was able to morph the dinner we had planned for tonight (salmon cakes over salad) into a classic: Classic Caesar salad topped with “Crab Cakes.”

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Except instead of crab, we used salmon. Because who can really afford $17.99 for a can of crab!?

$2.59 is more like it. [Although I’ll admit I think crab tastes $15 better than salmon!]

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Every chef needs a drink….especially a Classic Manhattan

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But this girl has been drinking way too much lately so I had a KERF Classic instead – a mocktail made with diet tonic, bitters and cherries :mrgreen:

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I used this Eating Well recipe’s technique for my salmon cakes and they turned out great. It involves searing them on the stove top and finishing them in the oven.

Also knew that old faithful had to be involved:

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  • 15 ounce can of wild Alaskan salmon (for the first time I chose a can with BONES! It was a bit of a shock, but like sardines, I just mashed and mashed until they disappeared, sans a few larger circular ones that I picked out. Gotta leave the calcium in otherwise!)
  • 1.75 cups fresh whole wheat bread crumbs (made from Great Harvest Dakota bread in the food processor!)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 heaping tsp Old Bay
  • 1 tsp Garlic Gold nuggets
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • Black pepper to taste

For the directions, see the Eating Well recipe! We followed them to a T. However, our recipe only made 6.5 cakes instead of 8. Guess somebody’s hands are extra large!

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While the cakes baked, we made our Caesar salad – complete with a dressing from scratch! I’ve never made one before, but Matt has in a restaurant he worked for in college, so he guided me through.

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Yum, yum!! The paste seemed more refrigerator friendly than a tin or jar of fishes :)

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  • A squirt of anchovy paste
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Dash Worcestershire
  • 2 tsp mayonnaise

Start with your paste and oil in a big bowl

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Mash it around

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Inhale the amazing aroma of CAESAR!! These two ingredients alone made it awesome. I need to cook with anchovy more!

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Add your egg and whisk. Remember that you should not consume raw eggs if you’re pregnant, very young, very old, yadda yadda!

[On that topic, guys, please don’t ask me if I’m expecting. I will TELL YOU – I promise – when we are nearing the time to have kids and that will likely not be for a year or more – we have to get the bakery open and successful first! You will know when the time is coming because I will be very excited and will not be able to keep myself from blogging about it! Also, I will not be drinking beer daily!]

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Add lemon juice using your nice flat microplane as a seed catcher!

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Lastly, whisk in the mayo to thicken a bit.

Toss in romaine and serve with fancy shaved parm and homemade croutons! (Which we tossed in olive oil and broiled for 5 minutes or so until they were crunchy toasty)

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This was one heck of a Caesar!

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These guys (Eddie + Holly) came over to hang for a bit tonight!

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And Karen has now departed for her new home! Hope she’s not too lonely :)

And here ends another KERF Classic.

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{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Runeatrepeat September 25, 2010 at 8:17 pm

I love salmon patties – it’s one of the things I make that I’m most proud of :)

I am over the pregnancy questions too. It’s kinda weird for people to ask…


2 Jan/Thella @ I Love. Therefore, I Cook. September 25, 2010 at 8:17 pm

definitely better late than never :) what’s even better is that your salad doesn’t look like it’s a last minute idea. it looks carefully prepared and assembled. congrats on this one and good luck to us with the future challenges. all the best!


3 Jessica @ How Sweet It Is September 25, 2010 at 8:20 pm

I love caesar everything!


4 Erin September 25, 2010 at 8:22 pm

Yum! My mom makes great salmon cakes that are definitely a top request when I eat at her house. They just never taste the same when I make them. It’s the love, right? 😉


5 Steph September 25, 2010 at 8:28 pm

Dang! I am cooking dinner as we speak (type) and am really wishing I could start over and make your dinner instead!!


6 Allie (Live Laugh Eat) September 25, 2010 at 8:34 pm

Oh I’m glad you ended up going for it, Kath!! Your burgers look great. We had crabs tonight that were 79 cents/lb!! We had to dig for the meat though…I wish it could have been lump crab :) Love this post. Voting for you of course.


7 stacey-healthylife September 25, 2010 at 8:42 pm

That is a great salad. The salmon cakes look really good.


8 Estela @ Weekly Bite September 25, 2010 at 8:48 pm

What a great dinner! Have a great night :)


9 Meg September 25, 2010 at 8:52 pm

Oh my goooodness, crabcakes! SO delish!


10 Anne September 25, 2010 at 9:02 pm

The salmon cake recipe sounds pretty good and affordable. I’ll have to give it a try. Also, can you refrigerate that dressing since it has the egg and all or do you need to use it right away?


11 Kath September 25, 2010 at 9:04 pm

I would think to consume quickly, but I don’t see any reason you couldn’t store it for a few days?


12 holly @ couchpotatoathlete September 25, 2010 at 9:03 pm

Kath this looks so good! My brother in law makes a great salad with salmon “balls” — basically salmon cakes with lots of breading on the outside :) Tastes amazing. Good luck on round 2!


13 Heather September 25, 2010 at 9:09 pm

I love a classic caeser salad – it must have anchovies in it too!

Love the ideas for the salmon/crab cakes – I’m not the biggest fan of a salmon fillet but I love it mixed in with things. Great way to get some omegas.

Enjoy the rest of your night!


14 Chelsea @ Strawberry Sweat September 25, 2010 at 9:12 pm

I’m not much of a seafood person, but your dinner does look amazing–good work!


15 Pat Kilmain September 25, 2010 at 9:17 pm

If you can find it in a can, red salmon is much tastier than pink. Here in Alaska, almost no one eats pink salmon. :) It’s softer and blander than the other varieties. Reds, silvers and kings are the eating salmon of choice. I make salmon cakes from leftover or home canned salmon a lot. Zatarains has a salmon cake mix that is quite tasty, and has some spicy red pepper in it. Very nice dinner. Hope that Karen likes her new home.


16 Kath September 26, 2010 at 9:12 am

My choices were limited, but I’ll keep hunting!


17 Camille September 25, 2010 at 9:21 pm

Those looks so good!
Good luck with round #2!


18 The Wife of a Dairyman September 25, 2010 at 9:21 pm

I really like the idea of using canned salmon for salmon cakes. I bet that recipe would make a great salmon cake ‘burger’…..YUM! Good luck in the contest!


19 Jessica @ The Process of Healing September 25, 2010 at 9:23 pm

Salmon patties are sooo good, so healthy, and easy!! I never thought to put them on a Caesar salad though!


20 Natalia - a side of simple September 25, 2010 at 9:24 pm

Sweet masterpiece for just having to get it together last minute. Definitely a classic. Good luck!


21 Caitlin (EatFeats) September 25, 2010 at 9:26 pm

Haha I can’t believe internet folks ask if you are expecting. I don’t even ask my friends that question!

Salmon cakes look good! Though I too prefer crab to salmon.


22 Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef September 25, 2010 at 9:35 pm

salmon cakes look really good! yum.


23 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey September 25, 2010 at 10:11 pm

Yum! My brother in law makes salmon patties like those and when I did eat meat, I gobbled them up! Delish!


24 April September 25, 2010 at 10:39 pm

Everything looks amazing and really simple. Thanks so much for passing these recipes along–I will definitely need to make them in the near future!


25 Marie September 25, 2010 at 11:00 pm

We were trying to get pregnant for a while so I totally get the frustration with people asking. I have this one really annoying friend that would ask literally every month and when I told her no she’d insist I was lying because she had a dream about me or whatever. I was so excited when it finally happened I could barely wait to tell people. But I really don’t get why people have to ask- it’s not really their business and I figure it’s that person’s news who is pregnant and they’ll share when they’re ready.


26 Jil @ Peace, Love & Munchies September 25, 2010 at 11:37 pm

Loove the patties! and the scratch salad dressing! A classic for sure.


27 Hannah September 26, 2010 at 12:26 am

Oh my, I *love* the idea of anchovy paste! So easy and quick and less messy than my jar of fishies!


28 Nicole @ yuppie yogini September 26, 2010 at 12:50 am

Social norms are so funny–if you’re of marrying age and dating someone, you get asked “where’s the ring”. If you’re married with no children, it’s like people can’t imagine that maybe you’re not ready/don’t want children (the horror).


29 Foy Update - Garden. Cook. Write. Repeat. September 26, 2010 at 6:53 am

When we were in Panama with the Peace Corps, the Panamanians did not believe us that we were married because we had no children and we were 26 which is way too old to not have started a family. I learned so many euphemism for pregnant. No, I am not carrying a pumpkin seed! I’m pretty sure they thought we were infertile after two years of living in their village and still no children.


30 Julie @ Willow Bird Baking September 26, 2010 at 12:56 am

Eek, Kath, I worry you may have misread the Challenge #2 details for PFB! It’s not just “classic” — but a classic from another culture that pushes you out of your comfort zone. Here it is:

Challenge Prompt: Ready to tackle a classic dish from another culture? Pick an ethnic classic that is outside your comfort zone or are not as familiar with. You should include how you arrived at this decision in your post. Do your research then try to pull off successfully creating this challenge. Try to keep the dish as authentic as the real deal, and document your experience through a compelling post.

This looks yummy, but I worry it won’t count! You still have until 3pm EST tomorrow (so 6pm our time zone, right?) Good luck!!


31 Kath September 26, 2010 at 9:14 am

Yeah, oversight on my part. I read “Classic” and “out of comfort zone” and thought “something different made from scratch”. I’ll defer to Foodbuzz on this one. I just doing it for fun. Anchovies and raw eggs aren’t really something in my everyday culture though!


32 Garnet September 26, 2010 at 1:02 am

OK this is one of those really bizarre moments in life. I’m pretty sure that I went to high school with the Eddy in your post.


33 Bogums September 27, 2010 at 7:53 pm

That is most certainly Eddy from HS.


34 lynn (The Actors Diet) September 26, 2010 at 1:50 am

sometimes i wish my hubby wasn’t a vegetarian – i love anchovy paste and wish i could add it to more recipes…


35 leah @ l4l September 30, 2010 at 9:15 am

It’s not an exact fix but you could try using a splash of vegan Worcestershire sauce (regular has anchovies).


36 Stacey (The Habit of Healthy) September 26, 2010 at 3:19 am

Mmm, looks like a fab salad! And what could be better than enjoying it with friends. :)


37 Anne@ Food Loving Polar Bear September 26, 2010 at 3:55 am

Caesar salad is one of my all time favourites – it never disappoints. Yours looks heavenly!


38 Angela (Oh She Glows) September 26, 2010 at 6:05 am

I cannot believe that someone would ask if you are expecting. In the words of Stephanie Tanner, HOW RUDE!


39 Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) September 26, 2010 at 6:32 am

Salmon patties are one of my favorites of favorites. And I could not agree more about the crab meat. Delicious but way too pricey.

The entire dinner looks absolutely lovely! 😀


40 Lauren at KeepItSweet September 26, 2010 at 6:43 am

that salad looks awesome, although i’d skip the anchovies!


41 Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) September 26, 2010 at 7:26 am

The salad looks delicious! We love salmon patties here too! Perfect on the budget and great nutrition.


42 Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin September 26, 2010 at 7:39 am

I never order Caesar salads when I’m at a restaurant, but I LOVE a good homemade Caesar with homemade dressing.


43 Bee Goes Bananas September 26, 2010 at 8:00 am

I used to order caesar salad every time I went out, but that kind of fell by the wayside when I fell in love with different dressings and greek salads. Caesar salads are still very tasty though, and underappreciated!


44 Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels September 26, 2010 at 8:19 am

Your caesar salad looks incredible! YUM! :)

I was just curious though, I thought the challenge was to cook a classic from a cuisine that you’re not familiar with? All of the entries that I’ve read are making foods from other countries.
This isn’t meant to be an insult. I was just wondering.


45 Kath September 26, 2010 at 9:14 am

See my comment to Willow above


46 Cathy B. @ Bright Bakes September 26, 2010 at 8:26 am

This looks incredible. Love the way you keep things on a budget, rather than assuming that everybody will go out and buy 15.99 crab! :) Love it!
Cathy B. @ brightbakes


47 Exmodel September 26, 2010 at 8:48 am

I love that your not afraid of using a fish paste haha


48 Kris September 26, 2010 at 9:56 am

I’ll second Pat #15 on using red salmon. I find it easily in the stores. I actually prefer it to canned tuna. It’s much firmer than pink salmon, and for me worth the price difference since I like it even though I generally dislike anything fishey.


49 notyet100 September 26, 2010 at 10:35 am

good one,..


50 Kel September 26, 2010 at 10:57 am

Love it! I recently tried anchovy paste for the first time in homemade pasta sauce. It adds a great flavor.

I spent ten 10 days in Italy recently, and had anchovies on pizza, in a salad, in pasta, and you can say I am hooked!


51 klm September 26, 2010 at 1:37 pm

I would like to come over for dinner please!


52 Mary (What's Cookin' with Mary) September 26, 2010 at 1:43 pm

I remember the first time I smelled anchovy paste… it was … a bit fishy! lol. Love cooking with it, but don’t love smelling it alone 😉


53 [email protected] September 26, 2010 at 2:01 pm

Anchovy paste? I don’t think I’ve ever cooked with that before. The dressing sounds delicous!


54 Gree September 26, 2010 at 7:09 pm

That looks delicious, I love Caesar salad and the addition of a different protein other than chicken is very welcome, great idea!


55 Sweetie Pie September 26, 2010 at 10:28 pm

I am well aware of your enormous following and know that if you ask them to, they will vote for you. I find it disrespectful to those competing who ran out to grocery stores 10 mins before they closed to get ingredients to make a worthy recipe of the competition. People taking DAYS out of their life to make something out of their comfort zone and to make their post count…Sure, its all for fun but you’re taking your popularity for granted.
I am no chef but i dont think using Raw eggs is really branching out of your comfort zone…


56 Kath September 26, 2010 at 10:31 pm

Unintentionally disrespectful


57 Allison K September 27, 2010 at 12:49 pm

I guess I don’t read the comments very carefully….people ask you if you are expecting?!? Geeze. The internet age has really taken the social norms of privacy and pushed them away I guess. I would never comment and ask if you were pregnant. Seriously. How rude.


58 Katherine September 28, 2010 at 6:53 am

Hi Kerf!!

Just thought I would share my favorite add-in for a ceasar salad…mash in a ripe advocado! It will thicken the dressing (instead of mayo, ick!) and it tastes out of this world!


59 Halley (Blunder Construction) September 28, 2010 at 4:45 pm

I just made salmon cakes last night, and they were a hit! I might even like them more than crab cakes. BUT I also had a run in with bones. BLECH!


60 Kelsey September 5, 2011 at 4:30 pm

I thought all caesar recipes have garlic in them….. I am currently on the hunt for the world’s most fabulous caesar recipe — and this one looks pretty fun!!


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