Recipe Fresh Fish Cakes

Discussion in 'Recipes' started by tacmotusn, Sep 8, 2015.

  1. tacmotusn

    tacmotusn RIP 1/13/21

    Once upon a time there was a young lad who loved to catch and eat fish fresh caught, and he had lots of time on his hands. He was a latch key kid, but seldom went straight home from school, because there were so many things to explore, and so many adventures out there. He also was an avid reader. In magazines that was, Field and Stream, Outdoor Life, Sports Afield, and Fur Fish and Game.
    One day when travelling home from school and taking the scenic route on his bike along the Miami River bank levee he noticed a small old man fishing alone at one side of the power plant dam where you could walk out on top of the overflow spillways almost to the main part of the damn. It was late spring and a fairly hot day. Approaching him he asked the old man if he was having any luck. The old man pointed to his bucket which turned out to have several panfish (bluegills, and sunfish mostly, and not many of much size). It was a bit hard to understand the man when he talked because he had almost no teeth. The boy asked about why the old man kept such small fish, and then quickly thought the question might seem rude so he followed up by asking if he had cats and fed the small ones to them? The old man just shook his head and said he would eat all the fish himself, and that he ate a lot of fish. He went on to say size didn't matter much to him because he cut the heads off, and scaled them all, gutted them, then used shears to cut the fins and tails off, then he ran them through a grinder twice to not only mince the fish but to completely chop up their bones as well. He said that with almost no teeth that the bones were a problem for him otherwise. The old man went on to say he made fish patties by seasoning with salt and pepper, and mixing egg and cracker crumbs with the fish, and then frying them up crispy. He said that way he had no problem with the bones, that in fact the little ones were better. The boy saw the old man several times after that. If the boy was fishing as well, and had a lot of fish, he shared with the old man. If the boy had less than a mess of fish he would give the old man all he had before he went home.
    I was that boy. Many many years later when catching rather small croakers in Chesapeake Bay, and with a Thai fresh fish patty recipe from a magazine in hand. I cleaned these small fish as described above, and ran them through an electric grinder twice, and mixed up patties, fried them and happily ate my fill.
    I am telling this story because small bony fish are often overlooked as table fare of any sort. That does not need to be the case. Specially in a survival situation. Over the years I have made these type of fish patties both with and without bones. If all you are catching are small bony fish and you have a serious hankering for fried fish consider giving this a try.
    Now here is a Thai Fish Patty recipe I grabbed off the internet. It looks good to me. YMMV Tac

    Subject: thai fresh fish patties

    • 1 lb white-fleshed fish fillets
    • 3 Tbsp. coconut milk
    • 1/2 to 1 cup breadcrumbs
    • 2.5 Tbsp. fish sauce
    • 1/2 tsp. grated lime zest
    • 1/2 Tbsp. chili powder
    • 1/3 tsp. ground cumin
    • 1/4 tsp. ground coriander
    • 1/2 tsp. brown sugar
    • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
    • 1 thumb-size piece ginger, grated
    • 3 cloves garlic
    • 1/4 tsp. dried crushed red pepper, or to taste
    • oil for high temp. frying (I like peanut)
    • TO SERVE: Thai sweet chili sauce, lime wedges, sliced cucumber, handful fresh coriander
    For Western-style fish cakes (the larger, breaded variety),
    see my delicious: Thai-style Fish Cakes Recipe (with Sweet Chili & Basil Mayo). Tac stole from this source
    1. Rinse fish and pat thoroughly dry. Cut into chunks and place in food processor or large chopper.
    2. In a cup, combine the coconut milk, fish sauce, chili powder, ground cumin and coriander, and brown sugar. Stir with a fork to combine, then pour into the processor over the fish.
    3. Add 1/2 cup breadcrumbs plus remaining ingredients lime zest, green onion, ginger, garlic, and crushed red pepper. Pulse to combine. You should be able to pick this mixture up in your hand and form it into cakes. If you find it too wet, add more breadcrumbs and pulse again until you get a good consistency (much of this will depend on the fish you're using and how much moisture it contains).
    4. Picking up a small amount in your hand - about the size of a golf ball - pat into a small cake and set on a clean plate. Note that traditional Thai fish cakes are small (about 2 inches in diameter and 3/4 to 1 inch thick) and not too thick. Tip: It helps to rinse your hands every so often with cool water to prevent mixture from sticking.
    5. Set plate of cakes in refrigerator for 10 minutes to firm up. Meanwhile, prepare your pan for frying as well as your garnishes. Pour oil into a small frying pan or wok, at least 1 inch deep.
    6. Heat oil. When hot enough - a breadcrumb should sizzle and cook immediately when dropped in - gently set cakes in oil. Allow to fry 30 seconds to 1 minute before turning, gently lifting cakes from the bottom of the pan. Fry until golden-brown and drain on paper towel.
    7. Serve immediately with cucumber and Thai sweet chili sauce on the side for dipping. Top with fresh coriander and serve with lime wedges that should be squeezed over just before eating. ENJOY!
    Make Ahead Tip: You can make the fish paste up to 24 hours in advance. Cover and set in the refrigerator, then form into cakes and fry.
  2. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    The Thai sweet chili sauce recipe looks great. I am going to try this. Also, I might just try this recipe with Salmon, and maybe make a few minor adjustments. :)
    Hanzo, Tully Mars and tacmotusn like this.
  3. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    B, try it with cod if you can find any.
  4. oldawg

    oldawg Monkey+++

    Thanks for the recipe Tac, but mostly for the trip down memories back roads.
    pearlselby, Hanzo and tacmotusn like this.
  5. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    that recipe makes me want to lick the screen. =) salmon, sun perch yum!
    Hanzo and tacmotusn like this.
  6. tacmotusn

    tacmotusn RIP 1/13/21

    LOL .... yes, I like spicy Thai food as well.
    pearlselby, Ganado and Hanzo like this.
  7. Hanzo

    Hanzo Monkey+++

    If you don't mind a little bit of work, you can use a spoon to scrape out the flesh. No bones that way.
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2015
    tacmotusn likes this.
  8. tacmotusn

    tacmotusn RIP 1/13/21

    Here is an interesting story and a Cajun take on fresh fish patties. also there are a ton of specific recipes down the left hand side of the page. Tac enjoy
    Real Cajun Cooking - Pure and Simple: Cajun Fish Patties
    Cajun Fish Patties

    Cajun Fish Patties
    Cajun fish patties include a medley of familiar ingredients and herbs which are common in many foods prepared by the Acadians of South Louisiana. Some of the fish which I have personally used to make these delicious fish patties, besides catfish, include buffalo fish, (I've posted a 3-part instructional video on another site which shows what a buffalo fish looks like and how to go about processing one.)

    In addition to buffalo fish, I have also used other kinds of white flesh fish, like garfish, to make my fish patties. Here's a garfishinfo link if you want to see what they look like in their natural habitat.

    I've also used fillets of largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, white perch and other kinds of fish to make these fish patties... the list goes on.

    Once, several years ago when I lived in the Atchafalaya swamp basin in south Louisiana, I made enough of these delicious fish patties to satisfy 8 hungry grown men and a couple puppies. It only took a couple fish, which I had caught earlier that day, to do produce the dinner. Each fish weighed around 10 lbs.

    Everyone loved it, too! What was the fish, you ask?

    We call the fish 'choupique' (pronounced shoe pick) down south where I was raised, but in other areas of the country it is known by different names... including mudfish, mud pike, dogfish, Grinnell, cypress trout and bowfin.

    Did you know that the roe of the bowfin fish produces quality caviar? Yep! Last I heard the roe from this fish was fetching nearly $120 for 16 oz . You can see a picture of ithere.

    Most folk that I know up here in NE Texas consider some of the above species of fish, like buffalo fish and garfish, as "trash" fish, and find enjoyment in hunting them using fancy bows with tethered arrows designed for bow fishing ... just for the sport of it. Most of the fish which are killed are left behind to decompose.

    I bet if they knew how tasty these fish are when prepared the way we Cajuns do it, they would think twice about not including a few for the dinner table.

    Hope this helps. Bon appetite!


    • 3 lbs. of deboned fish (most kinds of white flesh fish may be used)
    • 2 eggs
    • 3 cups onions, chopped
    • 2 cups celery, chopped
    • 6 cloves garlic, minced
    • 2 lbs. boiled potatoes, crumbled and slightly mashed
    • 3 cups bread crumbs
    • 1/2 cup oil
    • 1/2 cup green onion, chopped
    • 1/2 cup parsley, chopped
    • salt
    • black, white and/or red pepper to taste
    • a few dashes of Tabascos sauce
    • enough oil for frying
    1. cut fish in small pieces
    2. season with salt and ground peppers
    3. place fish in pot with 1/2 cup cooking oil
    4. cook over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes at 350°F.
    5. add onion, celery and garlic
    6. cook until vegetables are wilted then remove from heat
    7. add crumbled mashed potatoes and half the bread crumbs
    8. next, add eggs, chopped green onions and parsley
    9. mix well.
    10. use a large tablespoon to scoop mixture and flatten into round patties
    11. coat the fish patties with remaining bread crumbs
    12. fry patties in oil at 365 degrees F. for 2 1/2 minutes on each side (or until golden brown)

    Serves 8.

    Bon jour!
    pearlselby and Ganado like this.
  9. Rocky Road Lerp

    Rocky Road Lerp Monkey++

    Ganado likes this.
  10. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    Crab Cakes
    Makes 4 to 6 servings
    4 radishes
    1 small shallot
    1 clove fresh garlic
    2 eggs
    1⁄2 pound fresh crab meat, fully cooked
    1⁄2 teaspoon rosemary salt
    1 teaspoon dried parsley
    1⁄2 teaspoon paprika
    1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder
    1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
    3 to 4 tablespoons ghee or coconut oil

    1. Pulse the radishes, shallot, and garlic in a food processor until finely minced.
    2. Beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl, and add the minced radishes, shallot, and garlic.
    3. Mix in the crabmeat and all the spices.
    4. Heat the ghee or oil over medium heat in a large frying pan.
    5. Form the crab mixture into small flat cakes, and fry each cake for approximately 5 to 7 minutes on each side, or until well browned and cooked through.
    pearlselby likes this.
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