Thai Fish Cakes

These delicious morsels have been a bit of trial and error for me, and I have to say that I absolutely swear by this recipe. I skip using any egg white as I just think they are far better without, and always use a good firm flesh fish. The trick is not to over process them, and I shape them then let them sit in the fridge for a short time. They cook in a flash and are very more-ish.

When it comes to the dipping sauce I’m afraid I can’t offer a lot of help with the quantities. I suggest you start with the small amounts I’ve given, and taste and adjust as you go. This is also the one recipe where I am happy to use a bought jar of curry paste, which I keep in the fridge just for this.


  • 1 kg of firm flesh white fish fillets, such as ling
  • 2 tbsp of red curry paste
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp palm sugar
  • 1 bunch of snake beans, finely chopped {you may not need the whole bunch}
  • 2 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • light oil for shallow frying

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • juice of 1 lemon or 2 limes
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely chopped

1. Chop the fish into large chunks and put it into the large bowl of your food processor. Whizz for about a minute, or until it is smooth. Don’t over process it. Add the curry paste, fish sauce, and palm sugar to the food processor and pulse a few times until combined. Transfer to a large bowl, add the snake beans and coriander and mix it with your hands to combine. Taking about a tablespoon full at a time, shape into patties. I like to keep them a bit smaller as they cook quicker and make a nice bite size snack. Put them on a plate lined with baking or greaseproof paper and put them in the fridge to firm up for about half an hour.

2. While the fish cakes firm up prepare the dipping sauce. Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl, taste for seasoning, and adjust as necessary. You want to be able to taste everything in balance, so aim for just the right amount of salty{soy}, sweet{sugar}, sour{lemon/lime}, and spicy{chilli}.

3. When you’re ready to cook the fish cakes heat some light flavoured oil in a fry pan to a medium high heat. Drop the fish cakes into the oil and fry in batches for approximately three to four minutes a side, or until they’re golden and cooked though. Drain on a wire rack until they are all cooked and ready to serve. Serve with the dipping sauce.

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