Unlike some fish cakes, that contain potatoes or fairy large amounts of breadcrumbs or flour, these cakes are much lighter and don’t absorb much oil when fried, due to the use of chopped rice noodles, and only a small amount of rice flour for binding the cakes. The rice noodles also contribute a crispy crust, while at the same time keep the inside moist.
Tilapia has a very mild (some would say boring…) flavor, that benefits from the addition of herbs and seasoning. I highly recommend buying the whole fillet and chopping it at home. This way you’re not only sure that you’re getting good quality fish, but you can also chop it instead of grinding it, and get a coarser and more interesting texture.
If you’re looking for a light fish appetizer, try these cakes. I’m sure you’ll love the results.
Prep time: 20 minutes
Frying time: 10 minutes
2 oz (55 grams) rice vermicelli noodles
0.8 lb (360 grams) skinless, boneless, Tilapia fillets
A handful of each: mint and basil
½ bunch chives
1 Tbs green curry paste
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp salt
1 Tbs lime fresh juice
1 Tbs rice flour or cornstarch
Oil for frying
For serving: fresh herbs, lime wedges, soy sauce mixed with a few drops of sesame oil
1. Place the rice noodles in a bowl and cover with boiling water. When the noodle soften, drain, let cool a bit and chop roughly.
Cut the fish fillets into medium size pieces. Chop in a food processor, with the metal blade.
Roughly chop the herbs, scallions and chives.
2. In a large bowl, mix the chopped herbs, chopped fish, curry paste and chopped rice noodles. Season with the soy sauce, salt and lime juice. Add the rice flour or cornstarch and mix well.
3. Heat oil for shallow frying, in a medium pan over medium-high heat. Place spoonfuls of the mixture in the oil and fry for 3-4 minutes, until golden on both sides.
4. Serve with fresh herbs, lime wedges and soy-sesame oil dipping sauce.