I’m delighted to be guest posting for Paleo Parents this week, and I am also sharing the recipe here. This is a simple recipe that can be baked or pan fried, and because of the mild flavor of the white fish and the crunchy sesame coating it is a dish that even fish-avoiders will likely enjoy. Don’t be intimidated by the list of ingredients; I promise it all comes together in minutes.
I like to serve the warm fish cakes on a cool bed of spiralized cucumber noodles that I toss with a little sesame oil and some toasted sesame seeds. Top the fish cakes with an easy sauce made with homemade mayo mixed with fresh lemon juice and chopped cilantro, and you have a wonderful summer meal that is cruncy-cool-spicy-creamy. We are swimming in fresh cilantro from our garden and have been tossing it in everything, and it goes particularly well with fish. However, if you are one of those folks who dislikes cilantro you can certainly substitute some fresh parsley in the cakes and in the mayo.
Locating Sustainably-sourced Fish
Despite the fact that we live in Colorado, which is about as land-locked as a state can be, we adore fish and eat it at least twice a week. We are fortunate that we have several places to buy fresh and frozen seafood, including a great local fish shop, but even with those options it can be a challenge to find out which species are sustainably harvested. My go-to source for this is the Marine Conservation Society, which provides info on sustainability based on a five-point scale.
Depending on the area of sourcing and how it was caught, cod can be a sustainable fish to use in this recipe and I have used it in the past when I have found a good source. Other good choices are pollack, hake, or catfish. The delicate flavors of the seasonings work best with a mild white fish, but if you love salmon or char don’t be afraid to use them instead to whip up this recipe.
Sesame Fish Cakes with Cilantro Mayo
1 pound raw white fish, such as cod or haddock
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
3 tablespoons almond flour
2 green onions, trimmed and chopped
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves
1/4 cup sesame seeds
coconut or avocado oil, for the baking pan or for pan frying
If you plan to bake the fish cakes, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Place the fish, egg, salt, white pepper, lemon juice, sesame oil, almond flour, green onions, and cilantro in the bowl of your food processor. Pulse until the mixture is a coarse paste. You want a little texture left to the fish, so don’t make this into a puree.
Place the sesame seeds on a plate. Using damp hands, form the fish mixture into four patties that are about an inch thick, then press each patty into the sesame seeds, lightly coating each side.
To bake the fish cakes, oil a baking sheet with coconut or avocado oil. Place the coated fish cakes in a single layer and bake them for 20 minutes, or until they are firm to the touch in the center.
To pan fry the cakes, coat the bottom of a large skillet with some coconut or avocado oil and turn the heat on to medium. Cook the fish cakes 4-5 minutes per side, flipping once carefully, or until golden brown and firm to the touch in the center of the cakes.
Serve the fish cakes warm, topped with some of the cilantro mayo. If you want to make the cucumber noodles, toss a couple of peeled, spiralized cucumbers with a tablespoon of toasted sesame oil, two teaspoons of toasted sesame seeds, and some fresh cilantro.
1/2 cup homemade mayo (I make mine with Chosen Foods avocado oil)
2-3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
Stir together the mayo, lemon juice, and cilantro. Chill until ready to serve.
If you want to stay in touch, please find me at the following places:
Thanks for reading!