Salmon Cakes with Sake Cream Sauce

Doesn't that sound like something you'd get at a fancy restaurant?  It was pretty inexpensive and easy to make, and delicious!.  I saw a 1.75L bottle of sweet, unfiltered sake for $7, and figured I would be able to find recipes to use it in.  I also had some canned salmon in the pantry from a sale once upon a time, and the canned stuff is no good to eat my itself.  Canned salmon has to be mixed with other things, and you'll need to pick out some vertebra and skin, but it's about a quarter the price of fresh salmon.  Wild Alaskan salmon is on the list of sustainable, environmentally sound commercial fish.

1 14.75oz can of Bumblebee wild Alaskan pink salmon, remove the bones and skin - forgot the price ($2.50-4?) - ~600 calories
1 cup breadcrumbs - about a quarter of a $1 can = $0.25 - 330 calories
1 onion, small, finely chopped - ~$0.50 - 70 calories
1 tsp cayenne pepper! - $0.07
mix that all up in a big bowl until the salmon pieces are small
2 Tbsp soy sauce - negligible 
2 eggs - at $1.29/dozen (Trader Joe's) = $0.22 - 140 calories
mix that into the salmon mixture until everything is moist

in a small pot:
1 Tbsp oil - $0.06 - 100 calories
1 Tbsp minced garlic - $0.05
sautee, turn heat to low
2 Tbsp butter - at $3/lb = $0.19 - 200 calories
2 Tbsp flour - at $3/5lb = $0.03 - 50 calories
add the flour slowly while stirring, let it dissolve and the mixture start to turn brown (a roux)
add 1/2 cup plain homemade yogurt or milk - at $6/gallon (organic, TJ's) = $0.20 - 40 calories (skim)
1/2 cup sake - ~$0.50 - ~150 calories
1 Tbsp lemon juice (from concentrate) - ~$0.06
stir for a bit on heat, then set aside off heat

Pack the salmon mixture into cakes.  I made six that were almost an inch thick and 3.5" in diameter. Heat some oil on a skillet at low-medium heat.  Fry the cakes for about 4 minutes on each side, until the contact area turns golden brown.  

If you make six cakes, each will have about 200 calories plain, plus 90 calories with sauce if the sauce is evenly distributed.  This is a tasty dinner for three for $5-6, depending on how much the can of salmon is.

This recipe reflects what I did last night, with two fixes: I used 2 Tbsp of oil to start the sauce, which was more than I needed, and I splashed in too much lemon juice, which overwhelmed the other flavors.  The recipe I found online called for a cup of cream, but cream is expensive and essentially milk with 18% fat, so I had no qualms about making a little roux and adding skim yogurt to get a little thicker and richer sauce.  Milk would do too, but I've been turning all of my milk into yogurt and using it on cereal, burritos, and soups just fine.  I bet that you could use any white wine instead of sake, and I've had cream sauces with Chardonnay and Champagne.  Cayenne pepper rocks in any fish dish!  Use it!

I should take more pictures of what I make.  

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