This recipe was sent to me by my sister Ann. I made it a couple times; the first time I felt was a disaster, but the second time I really thought it was excellent, and very tasty. So, please read all my hints and suggestions before trying to do this recipe; I will guarantee it will make the recipe clearer, and you will like the results.
Ann says “Sorry but the recipe is a zillion years old and I have no recollection of who Alice might be. Probably I picked up the recipe from some friend and Alice is a friend of a friend or such”.
Ann likes to buy a salmon filet, check it for pin bones and then either steam or poach it and after it cools, flake it for the salad. I found that Grotons now has grilled salmon in the freezer aisle which you can microwave, and then I flaked it with a couple forks. The Grotons grilled salmon comes in 6.3 ounce packages, so I bought two for 3/4 of a pound. This turned out to be plenty of salmon even though the recipe says 1 pound of salmon. I suspect that the 1 pound shrinks to more like the 12 ounces when the skin and bones are removed. Whatever you do, skip the canned salmon; it is a disaster! In fact, I eliminated the mention of canned salmon from the recipe.
Update June 2015
I have made this salad several times now, and think I should update my experiences with making it. This last time, I put the shredded cabbage in the ice bath, and I feel that is more work than necessary. I was cleaning up cabbage all over the place after getting it back into the bowl. There were several problems; I had to find the ice cubes that hadn’t melted and remove them, I had a towel that had cabbage flakes all over it, and of course, I had cabbage flakes on the counter and floor from all the extra manipulation. So, just refrigerate the shredded cabbage for a couple hours before spicing it and adding the salmon mixture.
I am also certain now that the salad does not need a full pound of salmon- especially if you are using a fillet of salmon. Remove any pin bones, and cook it, and then flake it. While Ann says she steams or poaches the fillet, I found that it is quite easy to pan-fry. I put a tablespoon of vegetable oil in the fry pan, place the fillet skin-side down in the pan and turn the heat to medium high. Then cover the pan and cook on the skin-side for about 5 minutes. Turn the fillet over and cook on the meat side, covered, for 3 minutes. Take it out of the pan to stop the cooking and let it cool on a plate. Once you can touch it, you can flake it into a bowl where you will combine it with the other ingredients as per the recipe.
Alice’s Salmon Salad
- 3 cups finely shredded cabbage
- Ice water and ice cubes
- Salt and pepper
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- 1 Tablespoon vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound red salmon, minced
- 3 small sweet gherkins, minced
- 2 hard cooked eggs, diced
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise or enough to hold mixture together
- 1 Tablespoon catsup
- 1 teaspoon worchestershire sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
- 2 small shallots or green onions, minced
- Dash cayenne or hot sauce
- Whole sweet gherkins
Twenty (20) minutes before serving, soak the cabbage in ice water and ice cubes to crispen. Drain and pat dry on a towel. Dump into a bowl, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and sugar; add vinegar and oil. Mix and drain excess juice from bowl.
To prepare the salmon, flake salmon with forefingers or forks. Add the next 8 ingredients (salmon thru cayenne) and combine with seasoned slaw, then mix with 2 forks. Pile it into a bowl and garnish with lettuce and whole gherkins.
I think the directions can be simplified. I found I could slaw the cabbage and it was plenty crisp if I just put it in the refrigerator. I am assuming that the cabbage was kept in the refrigerator before it was sliced. so that eliminates the need for the ice water and ice cube bath, and the draining and patting dry. Just mix the dressing into the cabbage when you put it back into the refrigerator- salt, pepper, sugar, oil and vinegar. I didn’t have enough excess liquid that there was anything to drain when I took the cabbage back out of the refrigerator; I suspect the ice water doesn’t all get drained the first time if you use the water bath method.
The first time I tried to make the salad, I ran the cabbage through a shredding blade on the food processor; I ended up with cabbage pulp- not cabbage slaw. So while the recipe says shredded cabbage, don’t shred it. Slice it into pieces that are very narrow (3/16 inch) and about 1 1/2 inches long.
I also think the 1/2 cup of mayonnaise is overkill; I used only about a Tablespoon and felt it was plenty. An advantage with using less mayo is that if you have leftover salad, you can refrigerate it and have it a second day and there is not a lot of extra “juice” that you need to drain off. Mayo separates when it is in a salad that then gets refrigerated.
I served my salad on the lettuce leaf on a dinner plate with three gerkins on the side. I got three very healthy servings from the salad. Healthy in both size, and nutritional value- Salmon is a great source of omega 3 fat.