Spicy Thai fish cakes

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This recipe is classed as intermediate

Rating 3.25 / 5 (28 votes)

Prep time:
20 min
Cook time:
10 min
6-8 fish cakes

Enjoy a taste of Thai street food with Jonathan File's recipe for deep-fried, spicy fish cakes


1. In a large pestle and mortar pound together the chillies, shallot, coriander roots, lemon grass, lime zest, galangal, salt and ground pepper into a paste.

2. Add the cod and pound until sticky. Transfer the pounded mixture to a large bowl and mix in the green beans, lime leaves and fish sauce, kneading together well.

3. Using wetted hands shape the mixture into balls, then flatten out each ball into a disc about 1 cm thick.

4. Heat the vegetable oil in a wok or deep fat-fryer. Once hot add the fish cakes and deep-fry in batches over a moderate heat until golden on both sides. Remove using a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.

5. Transfer to a serving plate, garnishing with the sliced cucumber, pineapple and tomatoes.

6. Mix together the sweet chilli sauce, thinly sliced cucumber wedges and crushed peanuts and serve as a dipping sauce.


  • 3 dried chillies
  • 1 tbsp sliced shallots
  • 1 tbsp shredded coriander roots
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped lemongrass
  • 1/2 tbsp grated lime zest
  • 1/2 tbsp finely chopped galangal
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 400 g cod fillets, skin removed and minced
  • 200 g string beans, finely chopped
  • 5 lime leaves, de-veined and finely shredded
  • fish sauce
  • vegetable oil, for deep-frying

To garnish:

For the Dipping sauce:

  • sweet chilli sauce
  • thinly sliced wedges of cucumber
  • crushed roasted peanuts

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