Soaking up benefits of fish, without soaking up calories and fat

FAST & FRESH

June 07, 1995|By Rita Calvert | Rita Calvert,Special to The Sun

Many of us are trying to eat more fish these days because we know it's healthful, but somehow, there never seem to be enough easy recipes for cooking it. There's always the "broil-it-with-a-dab-of-butter" technique, but that treatment can get boring quickly.

Here is a simple, fast and efficient fish dish that makes use of a pantry staple -- canned salmon. (Yes, canned salmon or tuna still is a good way to get the great nutrients from fish.)

In fact, all of the ingredients in the fish cakes are items you probably keep on hand. These salmon patties are based on a quick-cooking rice blend that contains spices and a few token vegetables. The salmon-rice blend is bound with a touch of mayonnaise and some Old Bay seasoning for the kick. The cakes are baked, not fried, which not only saves in calories but also frees the cook.

Cole slaw with a twist is suggested as a side dish for the salmon cakes. To make four servings of the slaw, pour 1/3 cup of your favorite Italian or vinaigrette salad dressing into a bowl and stir in 1 tablespoon orange juice concentrate. Toss this with about 3 cups of shredded cabbage (just enough to moisten), add a thinly sliced cucumber and one orange, peeled and chopped.

Fruit complements the salmon cakes nicely and appears again for dessert. The pineapple in caramel sauce can be eaten on its own or served over a scoop of ice cream or frozen yogurt.

Salmon Rice Cakes

Serves 4

1 (4.5 ounce) package rice with sauce (Chicken Broccoli), cooked according to package directions

1 (14.75 ounce) can salmon, drained and flaked

2/3 cup finely chopped celery, about 2 medium stalks

1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions, about two

1 egg white

2 tablespoons calorie-reduced mayonnaise

1/2 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning

Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick vegetable coating. In a medium bowl, mix all ingredients together gently so as not to break up the salmon. Spray a large non-stick skillet with vegetable coating and place over medium heat until warm.

Divide the salmon mixture into 8 equal portions and shape each into a patty, at least 1 inch high. It is easiest to do this by using a 1/2 -cup dry measure to form the salmon cake.

Place patties on the sheet pan, but do not crowd. Bake for 12-15 VTC minutes or until the center of each cake is hot. Serve immediately with lemon wedges.

Sauteed Pineapple

with Maple Caramel Sauce

2 tablespoons butter

1 fresh pineapple, purchased without skin, sliced into 1/2 -inch-thick rings

1 tablespoon brown sugar

3 tablespoons maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger

Melt the butter in a medium saute pan over medium high heat. When hot, add the remaining ingredients and cook until the sugar is melted and forms a glazed sauce. Watch carefully so the sauce does not burn. Serve warm by itself or over ice cream or frozen yogurt.

MENU

* Salmon Rice Cakes

* Orange Cucumber Slaw

* Sauteed Pineapple

With Maple Caramel Sauce

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