Dazed and confused? Not me. I’m just Lost in the Cheese Aisle.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


Now that it’s summer - if not technically, then certainly by American cultural tradition - it’s time for outdoor cooking.

Actually, we cook outdoors throughout the year. The relatively mild climate here in the Southeast makes it easy to fire up the grill or the smoker pretty much any time we feel like doing so, even in the depths of the winter. But in the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day, outdoor cookage ascends to the status of “Almost, But Not Quite, Required By Law.”

Last week I smoked a couple of beef briskets, using the time-honored recipes and techniques imparted to me by my late father-in-law Billie Bob. (No, that’s not an alias.) But this week it was SWMBO’s turn, and she opted for the grill rather than the smoker. Burgers!

But not just any burgers. Salmon burgers!

Everything Salmon Burger
Everything Salmon Burger with Scallion Sour Cream-Cream Cheese Sauce. Delish!

What made these fishburgers especially tasty was that they were made from fresh salmon: not that nasty canned stuff. Not only that, they incorporated a hefty dose of dill, garlic, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, and onion - the same seasonings to be found on an “everything” bagel. That’d be why Rachael Ray calls them “Everything” salmon burgers, I’m guessing.

The patties cooked up tender, savory, delicious. We’ll be making these bad boys again, for sure.

To accompany the burgers, the Missus made a pile of fauxtato salad. Like a lot of reduced-calorie recipes, this one sounds horrendous at first (Egg whites? Cauliflower? Yeef!), but I’m here to tell you that this stuff was as good as pretty much any real potato salad I’ve ever had... and it fit perfectly with our friends’ dietary requirements.

It takes a certain amount of chutzpah to try out new recipes on unsuspecting dinner guests, yet we do it all the time. And both dishes succeeded brilliantly. Best of all, I didn’t need to lift a finger: She Who Must Be Obeyed planned and prepared it all.

(The brace of Negroni cocktails I consumed during the course of the meal didn’t hurt, either.)

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