Serves / 4
Prep / 10 minutes Cook / 10 minutes
Fish cakes are a Thai snack that also make a great light meal. They are traditionally deep-fried, but if you keep the mix quite firm they can be baked with excellent results. I prefer to keep bigger chunks of fish in the mix for extra texture, which also means you don’t have to drag out the food processor (or clean it later).
500g firm white-fleshed fish (basa, snapper or ling)
2 tbsp Red Curry Paste
2 tbsp fish sauce
˝ tsp caster sugar
2 tbsp coconut cream (optional)
2 kaffir lime leaves, central vein removed and leaf very finely sliced
2 spring onions, trimmed and finely chopped
1 long red chilli, finely chopped
6 green beans, trimmed and cut into 1cm pieces
1 coriander root, root and stems finely chopped, leaves reserved
1 tbsp vegetable oil (if baking, or more if frying)
Coriander leaves, to serve
Ajat or Sweet Chilli Sauce, to serve
Cut about a quarter of the fish into 2cm pieces and finely mince the remainder by chopping on a board. Add the red curry paste, fish sauce, sugar and coconut cream (if using) and continue to chop on the board with the fish until it is well mixed and resembles a thick paste.
Fold through the larger fish pieces, kaffir lime leaves, spring onions, chilli, beans and coriander and set aside until ready to cook.
Baking method: Heat the overhead grill in the oven to medium-hot. Form four large patties of the fish cake mixture on a tray lined with baking paper. Drizzle the patties with a little oil and grill for
8 minutes without turning until the patties are cooked through and lightly browned on top. Remove the patties from the paper with a spatula.
Deep-frying method: Heat a large saucepan or wok of oil to 180°C.
Deep-fry tablespoons of the mixture for 2 minutes, or until golden brown.
Serve the fish cakes scattered with the coriander leaves and with some Ajat or Sweet Chilli Sauce on the side.
TIP / You can even pan-fry these fish cakes like hamburgers if you prefer.
If frying, use a little more oil than you might think you need, as the fish cakes themselves are very lean.
Adam’s Big Pot by Adam Liaw is published by Hachette Australia, RRP $39.99, available now.
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