I can’t remember ever having salmon when I was a kid. The only canned fish we ate was tuna. As an adult I love to order grilled salmon, but I was not familiar with canned salmon until a couple of years ago. I started actively trying to get fish into my diet a couple of times a week, as advised by the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans to increase my intake of omega-3 fatty acids, and discovered canned salmon in the process.
Here are a few things about salmon I have learned:
- Generally, the redder the salmon the more expensive it is and the more fat it contains.
- Pink and chum salmon are your best buy.
- Canned salmon comes in a variety of sizes: the tall, 15½-ounce can contains about 2 cups; the 7¾-ounce can contains 1 cup; the 3¾-ounce can contains about ½ cup.
- Canned salmon contains high-quality protein. It has a higher fat content than white fish, but 3½ ounces of canned salmon contains less fat than 3½ ounces of broiled, lean ground beef.
- The canning process makes salmon bones soft and digestible. When you mash the bones with a fork and mix into the flaked salmon no one will notice and you will get about 290 mg of calcium in a half cup of salmon (that’s the same amount as you get in a glass of milk).
- Salt is added to canned salmon during processing. Draining and rinsing salmon reduces the sodium by about half.
These Salmon Wraps are a great for hot summer days. No cooking to heat up the kitchen and you can make them ahead. I have served them as both an entrée and as an appetizer. The most important thing to remember is to make sure all the ingredients are not too juicy. Pat the lettuce leaves dry, scoop the center out of the cucumber etc. You can use tuna in the recipe, but you will get fewer omega-3 fatty acids.
Serves: 6 | Serving Size: 1 wrap | Per Serving: $1.27
4 ounces low fat cream cheese (Neufchatel)
1 can (14.75 ounces) salmon
3 tablespoons light Italian dressing
¼ teaspoon black pepper
6 (8-inch) whole wheat tortillas
Rinsed lettuce or spinach leaves
1. Soften cream cheese in medium bowl or microwave for 10 seconds.
2. Wipe top of salmon can before opening. Drain salmon in a colander and rinse with water.
3. Add salmon, dressing, and pepper to cream cheese in medium bowl. Stir to blend.
4. Spread ⅓ cup filling on each tortilla. Spread to the edges.
5. Slice tomato thinly and cut slices in half.
6. Peel cucumbers. Cut in half lengthwise. Scoop out seeds with a spoon. Cut in half crosswise. Lay on flat side and cut into narrow strips (⅓ inch in diameter).
7. Lay lettuce or spinach leaves in the center of the tortilla. Top with tomato and cucumber down the center of the tortilla.
8. Roll up tightly. Serve immediately or refrigerate.