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Shrimp / Fish Cakes with Thai Sauce


A colleague at work recommended this recipe for fish cakes to me. I hold this particular colleagues opinions about food in quite high regard and she kept it up with this recommendation. Over time I added the shrimp but you could happily use either just fish, or just shrimp. Both will work out just as well. Beyond that you want it to be fresh, the specific type of whitefish isn’t super important either. I use Tarakihi because it is widely available in New Zealand. The key to making these work is to control the level of moisture, being careful that whatever you add doesn’t make it excessively wet. That also goes for your shrimp which you want to be well strained and patted down before you add them. You can easily put these together and on the table in 20 minutes. 

Gather the Good Stuff

For the Cakes 

  1. 400g Fish / Shrimp - any combination of both. The shrimp need to be de-veined and fully peeled and both need to be well patted dry. 
  2. 75g - breadcrumbs 
  3. 1 tsp sesame oil 
  4. 2 tbsp red curry paste
  5. 2-3 cloves garlic - or to taste  
  6. 1/2 tsp fish sauce - or more to taste 
  7. 1 bunch roughly chopped coriander - stems are ok 
  8. 2 eggs 
  9. zest from 1 lime 
  10. 1 tsp brown sugar 
  11. optional - 1 hot chili, small amount of ginger 

For the Sauce 

  1. 1/3 cup Thai sweet chili sauce 
  2. 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar 
  3. the juice from 1/2 lime above 
  4. Dash of fish sauce 

Put it all Together

  1. Add all of your ingredients to a food processor
  2. Pulse several time until well cut / mixed. Be careful not to over mix. You'll release too much moisture and make the cakes un-workable. 
  3. Meanwhile heat some vegetable oil in a pan over medium heat 
  4. Spread a small amount of breadcrumbs out onto your work surface 
  5. Using your hands form a palm sized cake about 1/2 inch thick. About 1.5-2cm. 
  6. Gently coat each side of the cake with the breadcrumbs you have out on your work surface. You don't need a thick coating just gently plop them down on each side to get a light coating
  7. When the oil is hot place 3 cakes in at a time and fry for 2 minutes on each side or until a golden brown colour has formed on the surface. I like to burn mine a little bit because I'm an idiot   
  8.  Remove to a paper towel lined plate and keep warm in the oven while you finish the rest of the cakes 
  9. For the sauce, simply combine and stir all the ingredients together 
  10. Drizzle the sauce over the cakes and serve with greens. Garnish with some reserved coriander leaves   


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