I love fish cakes. Especially the ones made with Sear fish. Sear fish is a delicacy in South India and Sri Lanka and is generally the costliest fish in the market after Pomfret. In Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu it’s called “Vanjaram” and in Kerala its christened “Neimeen”. Some people also refer to them as king mackerels. I am partial to the seer, because a. it’s an ocean fish, b. it cooks beautifully in a curry or a fry, c. It’s isn’t riddled with too many bones, d. It’s so tasty! My mom-in-law makes the best fish cutlets (south Indian style with loads of masala!) and the co-resident can’t stop eating them. Since I can’t compete with the mother recipe, I din’t try to replicate it. Instead I found one that uses thai red curry paste to give a fantastic spin to the basic fishcake recipe. It’s really simple to make. You can even make the cakes in advance and refrigerate them, just pull out and fry before serving. Now isn’t that what we all strive to do? – reduce time in the kitchen and increase time actually savoring the dish! Though I guarantee this will get over the minute it hits the plate from the frying pan. Kŏr hâi jà-rern aa-hăan! (That’s Bon Appétit in Thai :P)
Thai Fish Cakes
Prep time: 10 mins
Cooling time: 30 mins
Cooking time: 10 mins
What you need:
100 gms Sear fish fillet (poached)/ 100gms can of flaked Tuna
2 Tbsp Thai red Curry paste (I used Real Thai)
1 tsp Vegetable Oil
¾ cup chopped Spring Onion
2 Medium Potatoes (skinned, boiled and mashed)
1 cup fresh Breadcrumbs
Oil for deep frying
½ cup Mayo
Juice of 1 lemon
¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
Salt and pepper
What to do:
Poaching the fish: Place the sear fish in a saucepan and pour just enough water to cover the fish. Season with salt and pepper. Bring liquid to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer 7-8 minutes or until center is opaque and fish flakes easily when tested with fork. Remove fish with slotted spatula. Keep aside. (If you are using a can of tuna, then you can omit this step).
Remove bones from fillet. (there is generally just one big bone). Flake the fish into a big bowl. Fry the thai red curry paste in a teaspoon of oil for 3 mins. Add the paste, spring onions, potatoes and bread crumbs to the fish. Combine gently to bring the ingredients together. Divide into 8 portions and shape into flat, round cakes. Chill for 30 mins.
Meanwhile combine the mayo, cilantro and lime. Season with salt and a dash of black pepper. Chill in the refrigerator.
Now fry the fish cakes in oil, over a medium heat until crisp and golden. (Medium heat is important otherwise the outside will burn while the inside remains uncooked). Drain on a paper towel. Serve the hot fish cakes with the cool lime and coriander mayo. Fantastic!