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Salmon Cheddar Fingers and Celery Root Mash

I know what you’re thinking, “fish fingers, really Joel?”  Or maybe, “fish with cheese, really Joel?” Or “what the heck is a celery root, Joel?”  All fair questions, but stick with me on this one.

Just under 15 minutes
Fish fingers can be bomb! They are not just for kids, they are not stuck in the 1950’s, and don’t you dare for a minute think that you are above them. We’re making our fish fingers with salmon, coating them in cheddar panko bread crumbs, and pan-frying them for a perfect crunch. And no, our sides aren’t frozen french fries and canned peas, we’re cooler than that. We’ve introduced celery root to the plate. Celery root is truly just the root of celery, and when cooked down it resembles the consistency of potato. Mashed celery root and salmon fish fingers is retro and cool, trust us!

must-have

celery root
½ root
salmon
6-8 ounce filet
panko bread crumbs
about 1 cup
cheddar cheese
about ¼ cup
lemon
4 wedges
parsley
about 2 tablespoons
heavy cream (use the real deal here, not ½ & ½)
about ¼ cup
nutmeg
a few grates

staples

salt
flour
about 1 cup
egg
1

totally optional

potatoes in lieu of celery root
(or even half and half)

Preparation

Celery root
Place a large pan over high heat. Add hot water, salt, and bring to a boil. Grab your celery root and trim off the outer skin. Cube it up into same-sized pieces. Place the cubes into the boiling water and cook until fork tender.
Prep the fingers
Place a large pan over high heat. Grab your salmon and carefully remove the skin from the filet by grabbing the edge of the fish and sliding your knife between the filet and the skin. Cut salmon into “fingers.” Now we’re going to set up a breading station using 3 bowls. One bowl gets flour, the next gets the egg (scrambled up with a fork), and the last gets the panko and cheddar cheese (crumbled together). Add a pinch of salt to each bowl. For each finger, dredge in flour, coat with egg, and bread with panko cheddar crumbs. Set your breaded fingers aside.
Fry the fingers
Coat your large pan with olive oil. Gently place each finger in the pan and reduce the heat to medium. After about 2 minutes you can flip the fingers.
Mash it up
Grab a large bowl. Give your parsley a rough chop and add it to the bowl. Drizzle in a bit of olive oil. Strain the celery root in a colander and add it to the bowl. Add heavy cream and a few grates of nutmeg. Now mash the celery root with the back of a fork to form a rustic mash.
Plate!
Pile some mash on a dinner plate. Grab a couple of beautiful salmon fingers and lay them on top of the celery root mash. Garnish with parsley and a couple of lemon wedges.
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