If you have just embarked on the GAPS protocol, you may wish to consider whether you are ready for this recipe. Consuming GAPS allowable food should be upheld in order to optimize healing the gut and restoring good gut flora, however it is an individual thing depending on two factors; 1. the particular stage of the diet the individual is on and 2. the particular healing progress that the individual has made in terms of healing their gut and restoring good bacteria. For our family, we have been traveling on the GAPS journey for over 10 years and we are at a stage where we can be more flexible with introducing new foods (including starchy foods like sweet potatoes and new potatoes as suggested by Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride), however we do take into account that we do not over consume these foods.
This recipe is most certainly one that is not introduced from the beginning if you are using sweet potato. WHY? …….. Because starchy vegetables feed bad bacteria in the gut and allow them to proliferate and grow. ‘GAPS’ dictates that all starches should be eliminated from the diet in order to stop feeding this bacterium. When these starches have been removed for some time, the starch loving bacteria no longer have the opportunity to be feed and they begin to die whilst the GAPS protocol replaces it with good bacteria.
If you have not been following the GAPS diet for some time and have gut dysbiosis, we recommend you avoid all starchy foods, however if you have been travelling on the diet for some time and have restored good bacteria and healed and sealed the gut, then we suggest that individuals can try adding sweet potatoes to their diet in small amounts. The key is not to overconsume them and to add plenty of fats like ghee, butter or delicious duck fat. Sweet potatoes have loads of Vitamin A, but it is the pre-curser form and the body will not use much of that vitamin A unless loads of natural animal fats are consumed with it.
If you are not sure whether it is appropriate for you to try sweet potato yet, simply try adding a small amount to your meal with plenty of animal fat and watch for symptoms. If you experience gas, bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea or constipation, then your gut is not ready, and you need to use an alternative to sweet potato in this recipe such as pumpkin or carrots. Both of these versions work well and taste great.
Salmon Fish Cakes
Preparing the mixture
Peal the sweet potato (or alternative option) and cut into small square cubes. Place the cubes into a saucepan of water and bring to a boil. When the water is boiling, turn it down slightly to cook on a medium to high heat until the vegetable begins to soften but is not over cooked so that it is still firm. When cooked, strain the water and rinse the vegetable under water and allow to cool.
Alternatively the vegetable can be oven roasted in duck fat from a left over meal. (Adding more fats to sweet potato improves the absorption of vitamin A).
Dice the shallots and grate the onion and put aside.
Whisk two eggs into a glass and put aside.
When the sweet potato has cooled, place the cubed peices into a glass bowl along with the salmon, grated onion, diced shallots, eggs, salt and peper, and mix the ingredients without mashing the potato too much.
Cooking the pattie's
Pre grease the frypan with some duck fat and heat on a medium heat.
When all the ingredients are well combined, scoop a large spoonful and mould with your hands into a ball.
Place the ball mixture into a fypan like a meat pattie and pat it down so that it is flat. Do this until you have used all the ingredients and made approximately 12 patties's.
Cook the patties slowly to ensure that they are cooked all the way through on a medium heat. You may turn the heat up a little towards the end to further brown them. Much of the duck fat is consumed during the cooking process so you will need to add more duck fat as they progressively cook. When one side is browned, use an egglifter to quickly slide under the pattie to flip gently onto the other side. If done carefully they will remain in tact.
When both sides are cooked, use an egg lifter to remove them from the fypan. These are then ready to eat and best served with a little fried tomato and fermented vegetables.
Using unbleached baking paper, these fish cakes can be wrapped and stored in the freezer for ready made school lunches or GAPS snacks. They only take a few minutes to defrost in the oven on a low temperature to eat immidiately or you may take them out of the freezer the night before and placed in the fridge for the next mornings lunch box.
If you are not ready to add sweet potato to your diet, this recipe can use carrot or pumpkin in place of sweet potato.
Any fish can be used for this recipe. GAPS Fish suggestions are mackerel, tuna, anchovies and salmon.