Thai Fish Cakes with Dipping Sauce
Since I posted the photo of these fish cakes on my Facebook page and on Instagram yesterday, I’ve had quite a few people ask me for the recipe. Obviously fish cakes are a pretty popular – and why not? They’re easy to make and very tasty!
This is a recipe from the Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School in Chiang Mai, Thailand that I went to quite a few years ago now. You could attend for one, two or three days, but my friend and I were the only hard core ones that stayed for all three days, most people only did one. I have to say, this cooking school was a life changing experience. Before this, I wasn’t really into cooking in a big way and I hated cooking more than one dish at a time – it just stressed me out. But what happened at this cooking school was something amazing – by being exposed to so many new flavours, ingredients and cooking techniques, I was somehow transformed into a cooking obsessed FREAK! From the moment I returned home, that was it – there was no stopping me – I just couldn’t stop cooking! The more complicated the recipe the better, the more dishes the better – I’d have eight dishes on the go at once – it was dinner parties galore! And… I’ve never stopped!
These fish cakes are really simple and always popular. I find good fish for making these are ling, monkfish and flathead. If you have time, you can make your own red curry paste from scratch (if so, use double the quantity (3 Tbsp) of paste), or if not, just buy a ready-made paste. Also, you can’t beat a deep fryer for ease and convenience. Enjoy!
For frying: 2 cups oil
250g fish fillets, minced in a blender (e.g. ling, monkfish, flathead, blue grenadier)
1 ½ Tbsp of ready-made red curry paste OR 3 Tbsp of home made red curry paste
2 Tbsp fish sauce
2 eggs, beaten
4 Tbsp cornflour
5 kaffir lime leaves – stem removed and very finely sliced
4 snake beans or a dozen green beans thinly sliced
6 Tbsp water
6 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 tsp chilli powder
Mix all ingredients for the fish cakes together in a bowl until thoroughly combined
To make the sauce put the water, sugar and vinegar into a pan and dissolve the sugar over a low heat. Once the sugar has dissolved, bring the water to the boil and boil for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and add the chilli powder. Leave to cool.
Make the fish cake mixture into small, flat cakes about 5 cm in diameter and place them on a plate. Have a bowl of water nearby as you make them to wet your hands every so often. This will avoid the mixture sticking to your hands.
Put the oil into a wok and when it is hot, add about one third of the fish cakes – don’t try to cook too many at once or the temperature of the oil will drop and your fish cakes won’t brown properly. Cook for 3-4 minutes until they are golden.
When they are ready, take them out and put them on kitchen paper to drain.
Serve the fish cakes while they are still hot with the dipping sauce.
This makes around 20 fish cakes.