Fish and shellfish

Deep fried fish balls


I saw these being made by Rick Stein after he had found them as Tapas in a market in Barcelona. He suggests using any firm fish that is not too oily, so salmon, cod, haddock, bass etc including smoked.
Yield: 4-6 Servings as an Appetizer

1 lb. salt cod

2 potatoes

1 to 1 1/4 cup milk

6 green onions

2-3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

3 Tbsp chopped parsley

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

juice from 1/2 lemon

2 eggs

flour for coating

1 cup breadcrumbs

olive oil for frying

salt to taste

lemon wedge

If you are using salt cod rinse it under cold water to remove any caked salt from the outside. Cut cod into small pieces – about 1 to 1.5 inches. This will help cod absorb the water. Place fish in a glass baking dish and cover with water. Place in refrigerator and soak for at least 24 hours, changing water 2-3 times.

Pour out water and place fish in a colander, rinsing the pieces of fish under the faucet. Allow to drain for 5 minutes, then pat dry with a paper towel and place on a plate.

This is the starting point if you are using any other fish.

Boil potatoes with skin until cooked (soft and tender). Run until cold water and when it is cool enough to touch, peel. Cut potatoes into pieces and mash with a fork in a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

Finely chop the green onions. Heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan and sauté half of the onions. Add milk and heat. Add cod and simmer on low for 10 approximately 10 minutes. Take pan off stove and use a fork to break fish into small flakes. Remove bones

Add cod mixture to mashed potatoes and mix. Add rest of onions, parsley and nutmeg. Drizzle in 1-2 Tbsp olive oil, adding lemon juice to taste. Mix thoroughly

Beat 1 egg in a small bowl. Mix into the cod-potato mixture, then refrigerate until mixture firms – about 30 minutes.

Beat 1 egg. Place breadcrumbs in a small bowl.

Remove cod mixture from refrigerator and shape into balls, then flatten slight.

Pour 1/2 inch olive oil into a large frying pan and heat.

When oil is hot enough, roll each ball in breadcrumbs and dip in beaten egg. Fry over medium-high heat, until golden. Then, turn.

Remove balls from pan and drain on a paper towel.

Serve cod fritters with sofrito (tomato sauce) or alioli, Spanish garlic mayonnaise – or serve with both sauces!

Crab cakes

3 1/2 oz fresh white breadcrumbs

2 large eggs, separated

7 fl oz crème fraiche

1 tsp English mustard powder

1 tbsp chopped fresh dill

1lb 2oz fresh white crabmeat


salt and pepper

Put the crumbs in a bowl. In another bowl whisk the egg yolks with the crème fraiche and the mustard powder then add to the breadcrumbs with the crab and the dill.

Heat the oil in a non stick pan over a medium heat. Drop in the mixture in teaspoons full. Don’t overcrowd the pan. Flatten the cakes slightly and cook gently till brown and crisp, flip over and cook the other side the same.

Drain on kitchen paper the serve with lime wedges.

Crabmeat cheesecake


While we were on the Outer Banks in North Carolina we had lunch in Roanoke, at a small, privately run restaurant. I had this amazing crabmeat cheesecake and asked about the recipe. It comes from the Palace Cafe, New Orleans and I have tracked it down so here it is. I have left out a sauce as I think it is just great served with a green salad. Also the original comes with a pecan crust but I am not fond of pecans, the one I had just had a basic crust. A simple pastry ring is what I will use.

Crabmeat Cheesecake

Serves 8

Ready rolled pastry cut to fit the base of a 9" flan dish.

½ cup Onion, small diced
1 tbsp Butter
4oz Crabmeat
8oz Cream cheese, room temperature
⅓ Cup cream cheese or sour cream
2 Eggs
1 Tsp Hot pepper sauce
Rock salt and white pepper to taste

2 Cups Sliced, mixed wild mushrooms
3 tsp Butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350°. Line the base of a 9" flan dish with the pastry, gently butter the sides of the dish. Cover the pastry with parchment and fill with baking beans then bake the crust for 20 minutes, or until golden.

Preparing the Filling
Sauté onion in butter until translucent. Add crabmeat and cook just until heated through, then remove from heat. Blend cream cheese until smooth in a mixer fitted with a paddle, or by hand using a wooden spoon. Add the cream cheese and mix well. Mix in eggs one at a time. Gently fold in crabmeat mixture. Stir in hot sauce and season to taste with salt and white pepper. Spoon filling into prepared crust. Bake at 300° for 30-40 minutes, or until firm to the touch.3 slices of wholemeal bread
2 shallots
1 clove garlic
14 oz/400g raw peeled prawns - for alternatives see at the end
freshly grated nutmeg
1 large egg
2 tbsp sunflower oil

Put all the ingredients except the oil, in a food processor and blitz until well blended. Shape into 12 - 18 rounds then chill for anything up to a day then fry gently a few minutes on each side until golden.

If raw prawns are not available use the same quantity of white or smoked fish or fresh or tinned crab


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