Double Whammy Salmon Fishcakes

Image a freezer as big as a liner

Dearly as I love fresh food, there’s much to be said for having a chest freezer the size of the QE2, especially when you live in the country and you can’t walk to the corner shop like you can in the city.

I’d love to be able to skip to the market on a daily basis with a basket over my arm but a) we don’t have a daily market and b) virtually any form of shopping means getting into the car and driving for 20 minutes. Please don’t suggest I get on my bike – we live on what passes for a motorway here in rural Suffolk and I value life and limb.

Image of two bicycles in a shed

I’m afraid the bikes don’t get a lot of use

Having the freezer means I can buy a whole lamb at a time from my favourite sheep farmer, Jimmy Denny; I can freeze fruit and veg when we have a glut in the kitchen garden; I can make industrial quantities of something and freeze what we don’t eat so we always have a speedy meal at the end of a long day; and I can take advantage of special offers in my local supermarket.

The disadvantage is that it’s so enormous it can be hard to remember what’s in there, even though I keep a list (I love lists) and that means sometimes I find lurkers that really need to be eaten right now.

So I found myself recently with four enormous fillets of salmon from a half side we’d bought on the cheap and portioned up ourselves (a tip from my big sister – cheaper than buying pre-packed fillets if you have freezer space) and a big packet of smoked salmon I’d found half-price. Plus we had some supermarket spuds I wanted to use up before we started in on the new potatoes from our own garden.

Image of fishcakes served with pots of hollandaise sauce

This is the outcome. I’ve scaled it down for cooks who are buying the ingredients from scratch and aren’t feeding the five thousand.

We ate it with hollandaise sauce and a watercress and orange salad – please see below.

Double Whammy Salmon Fishcakes

  • Servings: 4+, allowing three mini fishcakes per person
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150g smoked salmon

300g fresh salmon

400g mashed potato

A big handful of chopped fresh parsley and/or dill

A big squeeze of lemon juice

Extra-virgin rapeseed oil (or use olive oil)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


Chop the smoked salmon and the parsley and cook and mash the potatoes.

Wrap the salmon fillets in foil and cook in a moderate oven for about 15 minutes, depending on size. You want them cooked enough to separate into flakes but not cooked through.

Image of the fishcake mixture

Flake the salmon into a big bowl, add the smoked salmon and mashed potato and mix well without mashing up the fish too much.

Stir in the herbs and lemon juice and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Image of a sample patty being fried

If you want to be absolutely sure you’ve got the seasoning right, form a little of the mixture into a small patty and fry it in a little oil. You may need more or less salt, depending on personal preference and how salty the smoked salmon is.

Form the mixture into fish cakes. I made small ones about 2″/5cm across because that way you get more crunch to your munch, they cook faster and they look daintier, but as always the choice is yours.

Image of fishcake mix formed into patties

These are particularly good fried in a little extra-virgin rapeseed oil (I’ll be writing a post on this soon) but you can use olive oil or sunflower oil.

I got 36 patties out of my mixture, but as I mentioned, I started with double the quantity of raw ingredients than listed here.  

Watercress and Orange Salad

Image of an orange being cut into segments


1 bag of watercress

2 oranges

Extra-virgin rapeseed or olive oil

Lemon juice

Half a teaspoon of agave nectar or honey or a pinch of sugar

Salt and pepper

Image of watercress and orange salad


Wash and dry the watercress.

Peel the orange and cut out the segments, leaving the skin behind.

Whisk the juice of half a lemon together with the agave syrup/honey/sugar and a good grinding of salt and pepper then whisk in the oil to taste until you have an emulsion.

Toss the watercress with about a tablespoon of the dressing and mix in the orange segments.

Image of fishcakes served with watercress and orange salad and hollandaise sauce

8 thoughts on “Double Whammy Salmon Fishcakes

  1. I am really getting to like your posts. Two reasons;
    1. I do live in a city (a suburb) and my access to ingredients is pretty good. You obviously don’t and your approach has to be different. I like that.
    2. Your writing style. A chest freezer the size of the QE2 broke me up.

    Keep up the excellent work.

    • Hi, Conor, many thanks, lovely to get such positive feedback.

      I got your message just after I nominated you for the Irish food blog awards, so right back atcha, as I believe they say the other side of the pond.

      • Thanks for that Linda. I appreciate the help. It looks like I have been over-nominated at this stage. Hopefully it will not get in the way of victory (or failure).

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