Herbed fish cakes, charred pineapple salsa & slaw

A bowl comprised of individually prepared delicious things is one of my favourite ways to eat, as evidenced by the fact that my Katherine Smyth ceramic bowls are pretty much never sitting unused in the cupboard. Herbed fish cakes, charred pineapple salsa & slaw is currently one of my favourite things to eat from a bowl. It’s fresh, light and will make you feel summery (even when it’s distinctly unsummery outside). 

Herbed fish cakes, charred pineapple salsa & slaw

Based on a Yotam Ottolenghi recipe. Makes enough for 2-3 serves. 

For the fish cakes:

cooking oil 2 tablespoons

large red onion 1/2 (use the other half for the salsa)

garlic 3 cloves

large bunch of fresh coriander 

large bunch of fresh basil

lemongrass 1 stalk

coriander seeds 1/2 teaspoon

firm-fleshed fish (I used moki) 400g

fresh ginger 2 tablespoons, finely grated

fish sauce 1 teaspoon

zest of a lime

free range egg 1, beaten with a fork

cornflour 1 tablespoon (ensure it’s gluten free if that’s a concern for you)

Preheat oven to 220°C on a fan bake setting. Line an oven tray with baking paper.

Finely chop the red onion and coriander stalks and fry together with the finely grated or chopped garlic over a medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Wash and finely chop the coriander leaves and basil, setting aside a handful of chopped herbs to add to the salsa. Add the rest of the herbs to the frying pan and cook for a couple more minutes before removing from the heat.

Take a large bowl and add the grated ginger, fish sauce, lime zest, cornflour and half of the beaten egg. Add the herby mixture to the bowl and give it a stir. Chop the fish into thin slices, cut each slice into thirds and then into small cubes (roughly 1cm in size). Add the fish to the bowl and give it a good mix with your hands. 

Use your hands to form little cakes using about a tablespoon of the mixture for each. If the fish cakes aren’t holding together add more of the beaten egg. Place the fish cakes on to the prepared baking tray and bake for around 15 minutes until they have browned.

For the salsa:

1/2 of a fresh pineapple 

red chilli 1, finely chopped

large red onion 1/2 (use the other half for the fishcakes)

zest and juice of a half a lime (use the other half for the slaw)

reserved chopped basil & coriander 

extra virgin olive oil

Cut the ends off the pineapple and cut away the skin, removing all of the brown prickly bits. Slice the pineapple into wedges off the hard central core and discard the core.

Place a ridged cast iron griddle pan into the oven to heat up. Once it’s hot as hell place the pineapple onto the griddle pan and roast for about 5 minutes, turning after a couple of minutes until the pineapple is charring around the edges. If you don’t have a griddle pan, char the pineapple in a dry frying pan on an element.

Place the charred pineapple onto a chopping board and finely chop, then transfer the fruit and any juices into a medium-sized bowl. Add the finely chopped red onion, red chilli, lime juice/zest and reserved chopped herbs. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.

For the slaw:

1/4 of a red cabbage, finely sliced using a mandolin or sharp knife

juice of half a lime (use the other half for the salsa)

extra virgin olive oil 1 tablespoon 

sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

Finely slice the red cabbage using a mandolin or a sharp knife. Place into a bowl and add lime juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper and toss well to combine. 

Putting it all together:

cooked brown rice 1 & 1/2 cups (from 1/2 cup uncooked rice) 

Place a small mound of brown rice into each of your serving bowls and add a large pile of slaw. Add a generous scoop of salsa and layer the fish cakes on top. 

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