These wonderful small fish cakes are a very familiar and popular appetizer. They are usually accompanied with Thai beer.
300 g (11 oz) white fish fillet, such as cod, cut into chunks
30 ml (2 tbsp) red curry paste
30 ml (2 tbsp) fish sauce
5 ml (1 tsp) granulated sugar
30 ml (2 tbsp) cornflour
3 kaffir lime leaves, shredded
15 ml (1 tbsp) chopped coriander
50 g (2 oz) green beans, finely sliced
oil for frying
Chinese mustard cress, to garnish
for the cucumber relish
60 ml (4 tbsp) Thai coconut or rice vinegar
60 ml (4 tbsp) water
50 g (2 oz) sugar
1 head pickled garlic
1 cucumber, quartered and sliced
4 shallots, finely sliced
15 ml (1 tbsp) finely chopped root ginger
1. To make the cucumber relish, bring the vinegar, water and sugar to the boil. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then remove from the heat and cool.
2. Combine the rest of the relish ingredients together in a bowl and pour over the vinegar mixture.
3. Combine the fish, curry paste and egg in a food processor and process well. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, add the rest of the ingredients, except for the oil and garnish, and mix well.
4. Heat the oil in a wok or deep-fat fryer. Fry the fish cakes, a few at a time, for about 4 - 5 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Garnish with Chinese mustard cress and serve with the cucumber relish.
5. Mould and shape the mixture into cakes about 5 cm (2 in) in diameter and 5mm (1/4 in) thick.
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