Monday, April 9, 2012

Oven Fried, Low Carb, Gluten, Nut, Soy-Free (GNS-Free) Salmon Croquettes

All The Flavor – Hold The Guilt!

Healthy, Oven Baked, Low Carb, Gluten, Soy, Nut-Free
(GNS-Free) Salmon Croquette Patties taste awesome!
Growing up in a three-bedroom house with five kids, a mom, a dad and grandmother often meant eating on the cheap. But even though Mama could out-frugal the entire neighborhood, food in our house never tasted less than marvelous.

Two cans of pink salmon cost less than a dollar back then and could feed a family of eight. Do you wonder why Salmon Croquettes frequently appeared on the menu with only slight resistance from Dad and the boys?

See, Mom had it figured out. Salmon Croquettes provided a great calcium delivery system for growing bones. They cost pennies to make, could be extended
with veggies and most importantly, they were a tartar sauce delivery system, too. Sometimes I think Mama was made of tartar sauce. Or Mexican Food. It was a toss-up.

Of course, back during the ‘60s in Texas, if it wasn’t fried, or smothered in cream gravy or cheese, then it had to be barbequed til brown. No wonder I heart brown foods! So these aren’t our Mama's Salmon Croquettes. Even though a can of pink salmon is still cheap by most standards, there are tons of things I add to the croquettes Mom would have never added.

Healthy Oven Fried, LC GNS-Free Salmon Croquettes
freeze great too.
For starters, these aren’t fried – I’m too lazy and my gallbladder hates me when I eat fried foods. Fluffy Chix Oven Fried, Low Carb, GNS-Free Salmon Croquettes are oven fried and are technically a great way to limit fat if you were feeling inclined (which I’m not – inclined that is, well…only a little bit inclined). And secondly, these sweet little croquettes are low carb, gluten, nut, and soy-free, as an added bonus!

Fluffy Chix Oven Fried, Low Carb, Gluten, Nut, Soy-Free (GNS-Free) Salmon Croquettes also have about eleventy-gazillion times more veggies in them than Mama’s old recipe. Thanks to the food processor, you can chop your veggies in seconds. The veggies help keep the croquettes moist and add a ton of flavor. I swear you would never know you are on a diet with these babies. Wow, a veritable cornucopia of flavor. Heck-fire, it’s the flavor town express!

FC, LC GNS-Free White Bread
comes in handy when stored in the
freezer, sliced and ready-to-go!
I made these for Good Friday (Meatless Friday) supper and so I made them a bit differently. I used some of the FC Low Carb GNS-Free (Gluten, Nut, Soy Free) White Bread slices frozen and lurking in the freezer and made melba toast with them, then crushed them in the food processor into crumbs. The toasted bread crumbs replaced the usual pork rinds/parmesan combo I generally use to bind the croquettes.

Sub pork rind crumbs if
you prefer to stay at
Induction level!
If you are interested in keeping this recipe Induction Friendly or South Beach Phase I Friendly, simply sub out the bread crumbs (which are part of the Grain Ladder in Atkins or South Beach Phase II) for pork rinds. You will end up saving about a 1 carb per croquette.

Hey y’all, this is a true story! Pork rinds are fairly low fat and are mainly protein and air. Think about it, all the fat is rendered out. And most pork fat is similar in composition to olive oil. It’s mainly mono-unsaturated fats with some polyunsaturated fats thrown in there too – unfortunately. And the bag has only two ingredients listed: pork, salt.

Pork rinds also provide important metabolic building blocks that only occur in connective tissues. These nutrients help your liver break down lean proteins. I’m not making any “health food” claims here. I’m just sayin’ don’t fear the rind. Don’t turn your nose up at the rind!

You can also economize a little further if you need to dial back the calories a bit more by par-baking the croquettes prior to adding the Parmesan cheese (yep, I used the Green Can Parm). I’m broke. It’s cheap. It has relatively few additives compared to other canned Parmesans.

By par-baking before adding the cheese, you can cut the cheese by 2/3rds. Add only a ½ teaspoon per side for a total of 1 teaspoon per croquette as opposed to the 1 tablespoon per croquette used in the recipe. The nutritional information for the recipe includes using 1 tablespoon of Parm per croquette.

Whatever you decide though, I think you will agree, these are easy to make, cheap to buy and pack a punch of flavor, while holding the side of guilt for something else – like dessert!
Serve this with the Fluffy Chix Tartar Sauce and have a guilt-free field day. Your family will love you and so will your behind!

Healthy Tartar Sauce uses Greek Yogurt instead of mayonnaise.
 (Oh hey, I forgot to tell you, I made the tartar sauce with Greek yogurt – totally mayo free and Denny and the boys were totally clueless! They had no idea the oh-so-stealthy low carb, 5g Net Carbs per ½ c serving, Greek yogurt was involved. So for pennies, you get a low carb, low cal, guiltless tartar sauce that helps build good gut flora too. Wow! That’s almost too much to wrap my head around and would probably explode Denny and the boys’ heads, altogether!) You can find the Fluffy Chix Guiltless Tartar Sauce recipe on my other Oven Fried Fish post.

Oven Fried, Low Carb, GNS-Free Salmon Croquettes

Oven Fried LC, GNS-Free Salmon Croquettes look decadent
but are stealthy healthy!
Yield – 14, ¼ cup Croquettes
Prep Time – 20 Minutes
Cook Time – 40 Minutes
Difficulty – Easy

1, 14-½ oz can Pink Salmon, drained
1/3c Onion
1/8c Carrots
1/3c Green Onion
1 lg stalk Celery
1/3c Red Bell Pepper
1/3c Italian Flat Leaf Parsley
3 lg Mushrooms
1 lg Jalapeno
1 Tbsp Lemon Zest
1 Lemon, Juiced
1/4c Parmesan Cheese, dry grated
3 slices FC, LC GNS-Free White Bread Slices, melba toasted, crumbed

1/4c Mayo, Hellman’s or homemade
3 Eggs, whole
2 Tbsp Country Style Dijon Mustard
1-½ Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
10 Drops Tabasco Sauce
1 Garlic Clove, pressed
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Black Pepper
14 Tbsp Parmesan Cheese
Olive Oil Spray


Place 3 slices of FC Low Carb GNS-Free White Bread on cookie sheet and bake at 250° until bread is dried out and golden, about 45 minutes. You can make the bread crumbs ahead of time and store in the freezer for use in many types of dishes. 
In bowl of food processor, add 3 slices of low carb melba toast and process into crumbs, the texture of panko bread crumbs. Add to large mixing bowl.

Break or cut veggies into similar size chunks. Place onion, carrot, green onion, celery, red bell pepper, mushrooms, parsley, jalapeno with the seeds, and 1 clove pressed garlic.

Process until finely chopped.

Add veggies to the bowl with the bread crumbs. Add lemon zest, lemon juice, 1/4c parmesan, garlic powder, black pepper, Dijon, Tabasco, Worcestershire, eggs, and mayonnaise.

Mix thoroughly before adding in salmon.

Budgent Pink Salmon - Wild Caught, Alaskan Chum Salmon. Nothin' fancer here people, just cheap, nutrition.

(*Note - Breast Cancer Survivors: It sux! These cans do have BPA in them. I feel only slightly safer eating this type of food from a can containing BPA, because it isn't a high acid product like canned tomatoes. But, regardless, I will no longer be using canned salmon once the pantry is empty and canned-salmon free. You can make these croquettes, by quickly poaching fresh salmon - and they actually taste even more incredible!)

Drain salmon and pick through to remove skin. Discard skin. Any bones in the salmon may be crushed between your fingers and added to the veggie mixture. This adds a ton of calcium and you won’t know they are there!

Crumble salmon into pieces and add to veggies.

Mix to combine.

You can make the salmon croquette mixture up to this point and store in the refrigerator up to 8 hours prior to cooking. You can also make the croquette mixture up to 24 hours and refrigerate - add the raw eggs right before you are ready to cook. 

When ready to cook, preheat oven to 450° and line sheet pan with non-stick aluminum foil.

Use the 14Tbsp of grated Parmesan cheese for this next step. Place 1 teaspoon of cheese onto the baking pan in a small mound. Make 14 mounds. Spread out mound with the back of a spoon to make a silver dollar sized circle.

Portion the croquettes with a 1/4c measuring cup. Place each 1/4c mound on top of one of the Parmesan cheese circles. Repeat until mixture is totally scooped. There should be 14 croquettes.

Measure out  1 teaspoon additional Parmesan and place on top of each salmon mound. Gently spread the cheese with the back of the spoon or with your finger.

Spray the top of each croquette with 1 burst of olive oil spray.

Bake 20 minutes.

Remove from oven and flip croquettes over to the second side. Add a pinch of the remaining parmesan (about ½ tsp) to the top side and spray again with a burst of olive oil spray.

Return to the oven.

Bake the second side of the croquettes for 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and flip once more so that the original top side of the croquettes are exposed.

Add 1 more pinch of parmesan and spray once more with a burst of olive oil spray. Return to oven and turn on broiler. Broil the croquettes for about 3-5 minutes until tops are golden.

Ok! They're done! Oh my gosh, I'm drooling!

Remove from oven and plate.

Serve with tartar sauce and a lemon wedge.

Nutrition Information

Fluffy Chix Low Carb, Gluten, Soy, & Nut-Free Salmon Croquettes – Full Recipe
Only 38.4 Net Effective Carbs for the Full Recipe!

Fluffy Chix Low Carb, Gluten, Soy, & Nut-Free Salmon Croquettes – Full Recipe
Only 2.7 Net Effective Carbs for each Salmon Croquette!

SusieT’s Notes Zucchini and yellow squash linguini with garlic and grape tomatoes make a fantastic side dish. This meal hits all the major comfort points I look for when I’m in the mood for good ol’ Southern/Texan food. It reminds me of my roots, the Coast (yeah, Galveston – even though it’s salmon – it’s fish, has fins and swims in the bay, right?)…and summers at the Bay.

Zucchini, Yellow Squash Linguini with Garlic & Tomatoes
makes a refreshing side for the LC GNS-F Salmon Croquettes.

Don’t be discouraged by the amount of veggies in here. Feel free to omit any you don’t care for, but let me tell you, they add very few carbs and great flavor – and they’re a terrific nutritional bargain!

Also, flipping the croquettes during baking helps keep these croquettes so crunchy on the outside and juicy on the inside. That’s a small price to pay to have the crunch of a fried food without all the greasy, messy after-taste, or the smelly, grease-filled house, or the guilt! Right?

Oh and these freeze great! I take one out and nuke it for a few seconds for a quick breakfast or lunch on the go! Hey, of course they're for breakfast. What do you think salmon fishermen eat for breakfast?

1 comment:

  1. Superb! Lovely looong list of ingredients; plenty of goodness!


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