Latin Twist: Salmon Patties


When Sofia and Wes, my kids, were in their early teens, I had to double the recipe to have enough for guests, too! (So now I have to double any recipe to make sure my son and his band can have some!) These golden, red pepper-flecked patties are similar to crab cakes. Ideally you would use fresh, wild salmon—but in a pinch, the canned salmon works, too.  If you’re not serving them immediately, set them aside and then, just prior to serving, place the patties on baking sheets and heat in a 400º F. oven until warm, about 10 minutes. Serve them with my Mango Sangría some of my Calypso Cooler Cocktails: Caribe Cocktail Punch, Ginger Champagne Cocktail or Ginger Lemonade (with or without the vodka). And for some other dish ideas, be sure to check out In the Kitchen with Arlen . Enjoy!


Salmon Patties

Makes about 20 small patties (Adapted from  Calypso Coolers ©2007, Arlen Gargagliano)


1 pound fresh salmon, poached, or 1 fifteen-ounce can (or 2 seven and a half-ounce cans) salmon, drained

1 package in a one-pound box of saltine crackers

2 eggs, slightly beaten

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

1/2 cup finely chopped red bell pepper

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

1 1/2 teaspoon fresh minced rosemary, or 1/2 teaspoon dried and crushed

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste

Canola oil for frying

Lemon or lime wedges



In a large bowl, combine the salmon, bread crumbs and egg. Mix well using a wooden spoon—or your hands. Add the onion, red pepper, lemon juice, zest, rosemary and cayenne. Shape into 20 patties. (If they’re not staying together, add a few more crackers.)


Heat enough oil in a sauté pan to generously cover the bottom. Cook the patties in hot oil   until nicely browned on both sides, or about two minutes per side. Drain on paper towels and serve on a tray with plenty of lemon and/or lime wedges for both color and flavor.




About Author

Maybe it was the dinner parties my mom always threw—or the hours I spent prepping and cooking alongside her (and then on my own!). Or maybe it was array of fabulous dishes that my family sampled in New York City’s richly diverse restaurants, but I’ve loved creating, savoring, and sharing food for as long as I can remember. Living in Spain, and later in Peru, also greatly influenced my life. These years abroad taught me Spanish—and about living in different countries--but also introduced me to teaching English as a second language, which I’ve done—mostly in the US-- for the past 20-plus (yikes!) years. I’ve authored two cocktail/tapas books, Mambo Mixers and Calypso Coolers, coauthored more than 15 others (mostly food related!), and raised two children. Now I'm chef and owner of my own restaurant, Mambo 64 in Tuckahoe, New York. My message is the same, whether I'm teaching, writing, running the restaurant or being a regular guest on the Spanish-language network Telemundo (on the morning show, Buenos Días Nueva York!). My belief in food—and the power of food—is far reaching, and is married with another one: the power of stories. I’m sure that if we could all sit down and have meals together, sharing both tastes and tales, we’d have peace on earth. Enjoy!

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