Fish Cakes with Tomato Sauce
For the fish cakes
50g white fish fillets, skinned
1 large green chilli, chopped
2 cm piece of fresh ginger root, chopped
6-8 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 slices of white bread, soaked in water for a few seconds, then squeezed out thoroughly
For the Tamota Ni Gravy
2-3 tbsp oil
2 pieces of cinnamon stick
2 large dried red chillies, broken into 3-4 pieces each
2 small to medium onions, finely chopped
1 heaped tbsp ginger / garlic paste
5 tomatoes, chopped, or 400g can of chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp malt vinegar
1 tbsp grated jaggery
1 ½ tsp prepared tamarind pulp or paste, or 1 ½ tsp concentrate
For frying the fish cakes
100 g plain flour
1 First make the sauce. Heat the oil in a casserole, add the cinnamon sticks and sauté until swollen and deep brown in colour but not burnt. Add the chillies and cook for 15-20 seconds, then add the onions. Sauté until they are softened but not browned. Add the ginger/ garlic paste and sauté for a further minute or so, and then stir in the tomatoes. Add the vinegar, jaggery and tamarind, if using, then cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thick and sauce like. Taste and add salt if necessary.
2 Next prepare the fish cakes. Put all ingredients in a food processor and process until well combined. Taste and add more salt if necessary. (If you prefer not to taste the raw mixture, fry a small piece and taste it. Don’t make the fish cakes until you have approved the taste for yourself).
3 Divide the mixture into 8 balls. Spread the flour out in a tray big enough to hold all the fish cakes. Beat the eggs thoroughly in a shallow bowl or soup plate. Pour enough oil into the frying pan to fill it to a depth of about 5 mm and set it o0ver a medium heat. Flatten each ball to about 1-1.5cm thick, smoothing the edges so they are not jagged or uneven. Dip each fish cake into the flour, then the egg, allowing excess egg to run off, and then place in the hot oil. Raise the heat if the oil begins to foam. If you want the fish cakes to have a frilly appearance, make sure the eggs are well beaten and fry the fish cakes strait away. Fry for a few minutes, turning once, until golden brown on both sides, then transfer to a tray lined with kitchen paper to drain.
4 Serve with tomato sauce. The fish cakes cxan also be eaten cold, stuffed in small bread rolls as a snack.