Nothing elevates a cold buffet selection quite like salmon.
Just think about it:
- It's always the smoked salmon 'n cream cheese bagels that are polished off first while the egg and tuna mayonnaise options languish largely untouched.
- The exact same principle applies to salmon sushi compared to pedestrian 'n plain vegetable-based sushi.
- Hotel breakfast selections may include a variety of pickled 'n smoked fish, but they rarely feature salmon, as proprietors know they couldn't possibly keep up with demand.
Of course, luxury item salmon is sold at a premium price, but there are creative ways to stretch it for guaranteed impact for less.
This deluxe Salmon Pasta Salad - see notes for potato alternative - is a prime example and a delicious way to herald the warmer weather.
2 cups dry macaroni or similar pasta*
1 large can pink or red salmon, flaked
1/2 cup good quality mayonnaise (more if desired)
1 teaspoon mustard of your choice
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/3 cup chopped spring onion or red onion
2 stalks celery, chopped
Approximately 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 tablespoon chopped dill OR 1 teaspoon dried
10 drops Tabasco or similar (optional)
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Bed of lettuce to serve (optional)
1: Boil pasta in a large pot of boiling water with 1 tablespoon salt till just cooked and still firm, drain and rinse briefly under cold water, then drain again.
2: While the pasta is cooking, mix the salmon, mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice and lemon zest together in a large bowl, and fold in the chopped spring onion/red onion, parsley, dill and celery.
3: Carefully mix in the still warm pasta, add hot sauce and seasoning to taste, and chill before serving plain or on a bed of lettuce.
COOK'S NOTES: Lightly boiled potatoes could replace pasta if preferred making this dish adaptable for Pesach. Add steamed green beans or lightly boiled asparagus if desired. I personally always choose wholegrain mustard in recipes.