There is something about circular shaped food that gets me. Also, that lovely contrast between a soft centre and a crispy outside that many of my favourites foods share – pancakes, fritters, scones, and of course, fishcakes, in all their myriad of colours, flavours and shapes. I don’t think I’ve met a fishcake I didn’t like. Granted, they can be a little flavourless if not seasoned correctly but follow this recipe and you’ll never look back.
This is a slightly modern take on a classic style English fishcake, I like to pack a little more flavour in there with lemon zest and chives. One of the things I love about this recipe as you often have what you need at home, and if not you can substitute. You can really use most types of potatoes and if you don’t have chives you could use spring onions. In terms of fish you can be really flexible here too, you can even use leftovers from the day before.
Eating fish in a sustainably-minded way can be tricky, to help on this, I find the Good Fish Bad Fish website and the Sustainable Seafood App really useful. And for those outside Australia, just google ‘most sustainable fish in [wherever you live]’ and you should get some good information. Some sustainable suggestions for those in Australia are wild snapper, Australian salmon, luderick, King George Whiting or the Dusky flathead. I haven’t tried all these fish but the recipe is pretty forgiving so they should be fine, better yet, ask your fishmonger.
To make the recipe gluten free, make sure to use only almond meal or gluten-free breadcrumbs. I like a mix of almond meal and breadcrumbs but you can just do one or the other if you prefer. Note that the tartare sauce tastes best when it’s had a few hours to rest in the fridge, so do make it in advance if you can.
- 500 g potatoes (peel if you prefer)
- 400 g white fish
- 1 small brown onion, finely diced
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley
- 1 tbsp chives
- 2 organic eggs, lightly beaten
- Salt & pepper
- 3/4 cup ground almonds
- 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
- 1/2 grated parmesan
- Coconut oil
- 1/2 cup good quality mayonnaise
- 2 tsp flat leaf parsley
- 2 tbsp small gherkins
- 1 tbsp capers
- 1 small shallot
- 1 tsp whole grain or dijon mustard
- Juice of 1/2 lemon (to taste)
- Salt & pepper
Dice the potatoes in 1-2 inch pieces and boil until tender, about 20 minutes. When cooked drain in a colander and leave to dry for a few minutes. Return to the empty pot and mash with a potato masher until a smooth consistency is achieved. Set aside.
Meanwhile, cook the fish until cooked through - either steam or bake - set aside to dry. At the same time, cook the onion in a non-stick pan with a little coconut oil until translucent.
In a large bowl combine: potatoes, lemon zest, parsley, chives, onion, eggs. Mix until combined then add the fish, don’t over mix this. Season well.
Combine the ground almond, breadcrumbs, parmesan and salt and pepper in a small bowl. Spread the mixture on a small plate. Mould a handful of the fish cake mixture into a disc shape (about 1-2cm thick, and 6cm wide) and then cover in the dry almond/breadcrumb mix.
Heat some coconut oil in a non-stick pan, and fry the patties on each side until golden brown. You will need to keep topping up the oil with each batch (be quite generous with the oil to get a nice crispy outside). Serve with tartare sauce, a wedge of lemon and a fresh crunchy salad.
Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse a couple of times until combined but not completely smooth. Otherwise finely chop everything by hand and mix to combine. Store in a sealed container the fridge.