Some (but definitely not all) of my more embarrassing moments in life occur during the quest for food. For instance, the time I made one of my best friends trek an hour and a half around Paris in search of one particular sandwich. After many twists and turns, we finally located the shop only to find that it had closed a few days earlier. Heartbreaking.
Or, the time I made my sister and mother drive 45 minutes across the island of Barbados for a fish sandwich, nearly missing our flight home. (They later both admitted it was well worth it, and that sandwich inspired a recent recipe, so everyone won in the end.)
To my point, the inspiration for part of this recipe came from a similar adventure: a few friends and I embarked on a 10-mile plus bike ride to get massive sandwiches slathered with a spicy horseradish-filled Dijonnaise that I've been thinking about for over a year since. This simple yet brilliant mixture is what elevates this salmon burger recipe from good to whoa.
When it comes to salmon or salmon burgers, most people's instinctive response is, "Meh" as if they are anticipating a bland, overcooked bite ahead. With the addition of horseradish, both in the burger mixture and spread, this salmon burger is anything but tasteless.
Ideally, you would be able to ask your fishmonger to grind the salmon for you—some Whole Foods locations offer this service—so that it's similar to the texture used for regular burgers or use a food processor to coarsely grind them, but it's easy to make the burgers by cutting them by hand tartare-style. If you've got a food processor, it's even simpler: just trim away excess connective tissue, cube it up, and process until ground.
To flavor the burgers, I use dill, crunchy red onions, and spicy horseradish along with a tiny bit of honey (which also makes its way into the mustard and mayo-based sauce). The subtle sweetness pairs well with the spice from the horseradish and mustard as well as the creamy avocado slices.
The best part of the recipe, other than the Dijonnaise, is the fact that it can be made in just about 15 minutes for a quick, healthy and flavorful meal. Pair with a light green salad and your beverage of choice. Your enjoyment will be the base for my persuasive case for trekking after the next great meal or bite. Clearly, I owe my friends and family a lot of credit for putting up with me. But, hey, isn't good food and good company its own reward?
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