Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Salmon Salad Sandwich

Living in the Pacific Northwest we are blessed with a bounty of fresh, wild salmon, some of which comes from the pacific coast and some from Alaska. My cooking creativity is sparked just by looking at the plump and glossy, pink-hued fillets. You'll find recipes such as Spiced Citrus Salmon, Basil Balsamic Salmon, and Salmon with Lemon, Garlic, and Thyme in our cookbook, just to name a few.

But what does one do with leftover salmon? I find many ways, but with my strange need to always create something new I thought of doing a spin on the old tuna salad sandwich. But what about the mayo? I have never been much of a fan so when a friend told me she made mayonnaise with avocados I thought the combination would be quite delicious. Salmon Salad Sandwiches using homemade avocado mayonnaise, what a nutritious combination!

So just how healthy are salmon and avocados for us. Let me count the ways...

1. Avocados are a rich source of monounsaturated fats, specifically oleic acid, which helps to lower LDL cholesterol while increasing the good HDL cholesterol. Oleic acid has also been found to provide significant protection against breast cancer.

2. Avocados are also a rich source of the carotenoid lutein and vitamins E and K, all of which are lipid soluble, meaning you need to eat these nutrients with fat for them to be absorbed. That is why eating the "whole food" - the avocado - works, as nature intended of course!

3. Salmon is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids which keeps inflammation down and thus prevents many chronic diseases (heart disease, cancer, diabetes...). These wonderful fatty acids also make or repair nerve cells in the brain and balance blood cholesterol levels in those with moderate elevations.

4. The amino acids found in salmon may be used in the liver for detoxification and also in muscle tissue for building and repair.

My old college roommate always made a fantastic tuna salad using chopped carrots, celery, onions, parsley, raw garlic, and capers. So this is what I did for my salmon salad and it worked. The raw garlic adds a nice kick and will ward off any cold or flu that may dare to come you. One clove is all that is needed but for the brave at heart try two or three. Your spouse may not want to be near you for the next day or so but hey at least you'll be healthy!

I used a yummy gluten-free (and also dairy-, soy-, and egg-free) millet bread that I made the night before. Its a new recipe, so sorry folks I won't share it just yet.


Avocado Mayonnaise

I don't have an exact recipe for this because I just add ingredients until the consistency and taste are just right. (And because I was feeding my 13 month twins chunks of avocado as I was making this).

1 to 2 small avocados
1 to 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 to 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 to 3 tablespoons water
sea salt or Herbamare, to taste

Place all ingredients into a bowl or large mug and blend with an immersion blender (hand held blender). You can also use a blender or food processor, but given the small quantity of mayo you will be making it is much easier and more efficient to use a hand blender (makes clean-up easier too).

Salmon Salad Sandwich

I don't have any measurements for this either. But this is the type of meal that needs no measuring, just use your intuitions and let your taste buds guide you.

leftover cooked salmon, broken into pieces (canned or smoked salmon would also work)
avocado mayonnaise
diced carrot
diced celery
chopped green or red onion
1 to 2 cloves garlic, crushed
capers
finely chopped parsley
sea salt or Herbamare, to taste

Place all ingredients into a small bowl and gently mix together with a fork. Place a few scoops onto a slice of your favorite gluten-free bread, add some lettuce and another slice of bread. That's it! Enjoy!

17 comments:

  1. Rats, I lost my comment ... okay, let me try again.

    Salmon and avocado are two of my absolute faves. I don't do capers, but otherwise, this recipe looks and sounds fantastic! I'll skip the bread and just have it over salad greens. (I don't like worrying about having GF bread on hand, and I don't need the carbs.)

    Thanks!
    Shirley

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  2. Shirley -

    Yes this would be great over mixed greens. Another way to eat it is to place the salmon salad into crispy romaine lettuce leaves. I often use romaine lettuce for a variety of "wrap sandwiches."

    Thanks for your comment!

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  3. Oh yea! I absolutely LOVE your cookbook and I am an avid reader of food blogs, so I am so excited to find this. Thanks!

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  4. Ali--You're right, of course! Romaine leaves are great and I like them. I guess I find that I just like nibbling with a fork in hand most of the time. There's something about little bites that I enjoy. ;-) BTW, Melissa at Gluten Free for Good (http://www.glutenfreeforgood.com/blog/) recommends Napa cabbage leaves for wraps. No Napa cabbage in my basic grocery store, but I definitely want to try that variation soon as I have a newfound love for raw cabbage.

    Shirley

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  5. Shirley -

    We love Napa cabbage leaves for this too, its just that they are not always in season. Tom uses them for recipes in his 28-day Elimination and Detox diet in our cookbook.

    Thanks for the link! -Ali :)

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  6. Being married to a salmon fisherman we get a lot of salmon (lucky us!) so I'm always looking for new ways to eat it. And I love avacados so the Avacado Mayonnaise sounds fabulous! I've got to try it as soon as I get some salmon.
    Thanks!!
    Maureen

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  7. I love it! You always come up with great food to eat. Thank you for sharing with us.

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  8. The Salmon Salad looks so good. Always wanted an avocado dressing and this is it. I will definitely be making this.

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  9. I liked the sound of this, but I'm vegan, so I substituted chick peas for the salmon - yummy!!!

    I'm sure you've used avocados in desserts, too, haven't you? Very indulgent seeming, yet good for you - a winner:)

    Call in for a chat with me! Christine's Chatter is at :-
    http://cadugdale.blogspot.com

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  10. Hi Ali,

    This was really tasty and pretty quick weeknight supper. My husband and I ate it with gf multigrain crackers from Costco. We had leftovers for lunch and they were still good (not always the case with avocado or salmon).

    To make it, I used canned wild red salmon, which I processed in the Cuisinart to smoosh all the skins and bones (those bones have so much calcium and nutrients; plus, picking them out would be a huge pain!). Then I added diced veges, processed a bit more, added the avo mayo, processed to combine, and then added a few shredded carrots and cilantro. Perfect! I was gifted with a case of canned wild red salmon so I try to make a meal with it every 2 weeks or so. Soon I want to try your salmon quinoa patties. :)

    What do you use the extra avo mayo for?

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  11. Thanks for your dedication to great tasting health. Would you please tell me what is 'coconut sugar'? I use lots of coconut everyday and don't know about this. Thanks.
    Sandy

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  12. Hi Ali and Tom!

    Just wanted to say thank you so much for your avocado mayonnaise. It has revolutionized my feelings towards mayonnaise. Seriously. I've even developed my own recipe based on it and I make it every week - check it out: http://thepalatepeacemaker.com/2010/04/14/curried-turkey-salad/

    Thanks again,
    Desi

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  13. I have been looking for a mayonnaise recently that used avocados for the base. Thank you! It's much better than buying a jar of mayonnaise full of soy and canola (even the organic jars has this in there).

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  14. I added a bit of garlic powder and white pepper to the avocado mayonaise. I've also used it as a salad dressing thinned with a bit of apple cider vinegar. Yummy!

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  15. I just made the avocado mayo into a tasty salad dressing by thinning it with almond milk, adding onion powder and black pepper and a couple of dates for a hint of sweetness. It was delicious on my chicken salad with apples and dried cranberries!

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  16. This was really lovely/nummy. Thanks!

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  17. I did this sushi style and used fresh raw salmon, and wrapped with butter lettuce instead of using bread. I didn't have onion or capers and it still turned out so delicious, with a little dill! Thanks for this!

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Thanks, and as always, Happy Cooking! Ali & Tom