These fish cakes are a typical street snack food in Thailand.   They are usually made with kaffir lime leaves which have a distinctly pungent flavor but can be difficult to find in some grocery stores.  You can substitute for lime zest as I did in this recipe but for a more authentically Thai flavor use the kaffir lime leaves….just remove the spines and finely slice the leaves.


1 lb. whitefish fillets, finely ground in food processor

1 tbls. roasted chili paste or red curry paste

1 tbls. fish sauce

1 tbls. cornstarch

½ tsp salt

2 oz. green beans thinly sliced

2 tbls. lime zest or 4 kaffir lime leaves, spines removed and leaves finely sliced

Peanut Oil


Dipping Sauce

¼ cup high-quality fish sauce

2 tbls. lime juice

1 tsp. coconut sugar

1 tsp. shredded carrot

2 tbls. diced cucumber

1 serrano pepper, thinly sliced

fresh cilantro


Fish Cakes 2

In a bowl, combine the fish, chile paste or curry paste, fish sauce, cornstarch, salt, green beans and lime.  Thoroughly mix with hands for 1 minute.   Moisten hands with water and divide mixture into 20 balls.  Flatten each into a patty about 2” in diameter and ½” thick.


Preheat frying pan over med-high heat.  Add peanut oil to depth of 1” and heat to 375° on a deep-frying thermometer.  Slip a few patties into the hot oil and fry on the first side until golden brown, about 2 minutes.  Turn them over and fry on the second side until golden, about 2 minutes longer.  Using a slotted spatula or tongs, transfer to paper towels and drain.  

Arrange the cakes on a platter and serve with dipping sauce.

Chef Trish Wesevich

Chef Trish Wesevich

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About The Author

Trish Wesevich
Recipe/Editorial Contributor - 2013-Present

Chef Trish Wesevich is the owner and operator of Capital Kitchens in Austin, Texas and a contributing writer and recipe developer for Austin Food Magazine.

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