When it comes to cooking New Zealand fish, they don’t come much more expert than Al Brown. Chef, self-confessed seafood lover and author of new book Eat Up New Zealand, Al knows how to bring the best out of the fruits of the sea. He now works with Freshcatch, a Kiwi company dedicated to getting us to experiment more with fish by delivering it super-fresh to your door.
This recipe for Smoked Fishcakes by Al Brown ticks all the boxes for me. “Fishcakes are a real favourite of mine,” says Al. “I love them because they are incredibly satisfying; some would say they are the ultimate comfort food.”
Succulent and tasty, after you’ve tried this you’ll never buy store-bought again!
- 700g golden kumara (peeled, washed, cut into 1cm cubes)
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 2 cups onion (fine dice)
- 1 cup celery (fine dice)
- 1 cup green capsicum (fine dice)
- 700g smoked kahawai (roughly broken up)
- 1/3 cup mild peppadews (rough chopped)
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs (or similar)
- 2 tablespoons Italian parsley (finely chopped)
- 1 lemon (zest and juice)
- Sea salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
For cooking and serving
- Panko bread crumbs (or similar)
- Tartare sauce
- 3 lemons
To make the fish cakes, place kumara in a large saucepan with cold salted water. Bring to a boil on high heat, turn down to a simmer and cook gently until kumara are tender (about 8 minutes). Drain kumara from water and allow to cool.
Heat a frying pan or similar to a medium low heat. Add the oil, and then sweat the onion and celery on low heat until they are cooked through, about 15 minutes. Remove and cool, then add to the cooked kumara, followed by the ripped up smoked fish and chopped peppadews.
Add the mayonnaise, breadcrumbs, herbs and lemon zest/juice to the fishcake mix.
Fold through ingredients until mix comes together. Season with sea salt and fresh ground pepper. If the mix seems a little soft, add some extra breadcrumbs to bind. Refrigerate until required.
Cooking and serving
Preheat oven to 160°.
Mould the fishcakes into your desired size. Toss the fishcakes in the breadcrumbs until well coated.
Heat frying pan to medium heat and pour in enough oil to shallow fry. Cook the fishcakes until golden brown on both sides. Repeat until all the fish cakes are done. Place them in an ovenproof dish and heat through in the oven (about 5 minutes).
Serve the smoked Kahawai fish cakes on warm plates with a dollop of fresh tartare and half a lemon on the side.
Watch how Al does it: