Sunday, December 09, 2007

Thai Fish Cakes with a Sour Dip

This is another fish recipe from Delia Smith's collection.
These fish cakes have the characteristic Thai flavor that we quite like. It makes a dinner for 2 or an entrée for 4.

For the fish cakes
- 500gr white fish fillets (no skin, no bones), roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon red curry paste
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 small spring onion, finely sliced
- 2 tablespoons fresh coriander
- 1 tablespoon lime (or lemon) juice
- 1 tablespoon coconut milk powder
- pinch of salt

For the dip
- 1 small carrot, roughly grated
- 1 cucumber (in Japan. Otherwise 10-15cm of cucumber), roughly grated
- 1 teaspoon ginger paste (or fresh ginger)
- 1 tablespoon crushed peanuts or cashew nuts
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 30-40ml rice vinegar (or wine vinegar)
- 1 tablespoon groundnut oil or olive oil
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- pinch of salt and pepper

Simply place the chunks of fish, the coriander leaves, lime juice, spring onions, curry paste, garlic, coconut milk powder and a little salt in a food processor and blend till you have a finely minced texture – don't blend it to a fine purée, though, as this is not so good. Transfer to a mixing bowl. Next take dessertspoons of the mixture and form them into balls, squeezing the mixture together. Then flatten them out with the palm of your hand into small cake shapes about 4 cm in diameter (a little bit of flour might help). You should get about 16 in all. When all the fish cakes are ready, put them on to a floured plate, cover with clingfilm and leave them in the fridge for a couple of hours to firm up.

Meanwhile, make the sauce. Mix the sugar with vinegar, soy sauce, ginger, oil, salt, pepper, peanuts, and pour over the grated carrot and cucumber.

To cook the fish cakes, heat a few tablespoons of oil in a frying pan and, when it's very hot and beginning to shimmer, fry the cakes for about 2 minutes on each side, then drain on kitchen paper. Garnish with sprigs of coriander and serve with the dipping sauce and white rice.

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