This is a great starter with brilliant flavours of the Far East. Use fresh Thai Red curry paste if you can make it, or a good quality shop bought paste.
450g White fish flesh (cod / haddock), skinned and boned, cut into cubes
2 Spring onions, finely sliced
2 Kaffir lime leaves, soaked in water and finely sliced
50g Dried coconut powder
2 tbs Fresh coriander leaves
2 tbs Thai Red Curry paste
1 Lime, grated zest and juiced
1 Green chilli
2 tbs Groundnut oil, for frying
For the dipping sauce
5cm Unpeeled cucumber
1 Small carrot
1 Small green chilli, deseeded
1 tsp Fresh ginger, grated
1 tbs Peanuts, roasted (not salted)
1 tbs Soft brown sugar
110ml Rice vinegar or wine vinegar
1 tbs Light soy sauce
1 tbs Groundnut oil
Preparation and cooking
Place the chunks of fish, coriander leaves, lime juice, lime zest, kaffir lime leaves, spring onions, red curry paste, chilli and a little salt in a food processor and blend until you have a finely minced texture. Add the coconut powder and stir to mix. Don’t over-blend to a fine puree! Next take tablespoons of the mixture, and squeeze out any excess liquid, then form into a round ball, and flatten in the palm of your hand. This quantity should make approx. 16 fish cakes. Place them on a plate, cover with clingfilm, then chill in the fridge for at least a couple of hours.
Make the sauce, by placing the cucumber, shallots, carrot, chilli, ginger, and peanuts in a food processor and blend until finely chopped. Next, mix the sugar and vinegar in a bowl, until the sugar is dissolved. Add the finely chopped vegetables, soy sauce, and groundnut oil and mix together.
To cook the fish cakes, heat the oil in a frying pan over a very high heat. Its important that the oil is very hot to seal the fish cakes and stop them falling apart. When the oil begins to shimmer, fry the fish cakes for 1 minute on each side, then drain on kitchen paper. Garnish with sprigs of fresh coriander.