Friday, 30 May 2014

Dinner Party Impress

Cam has been dying to come round for dinner and I felt a great pressure to whip something up that he would be suitably impressed by.

So I turned to my favourite lady to help me out. The fantastic Angela Hartnett. (Who is currently on in the background judging The Great British Menu)

All of you need to get your hands on this recipe book. My copy is so used and she has every sort of idea from the more decadent to simple and delicious bowls of pasta. Totally my sort of cooking, no fuss, no overly complicated recipes, just really good food.

 Ive also had the pleasure of eating in her newest restaurant Hartnett Holder and Co in Limewood House, Hampshire. Before you ask, yes, it was as awesome as I expected it. 

 So anyway, back to the food. Like I said Cam needed to be impressed so I embarked on a recipe I hadn't actually used from this book, but I had no fear. I have actually tweaked it a touch though. Sorry Ange. I promise that it is really easy with a great outcome, though you will need a magi mix or some sort of blender for it. 
I also doubled the original recipe to feed 5 of us, plus leftovers and Im pretty sure they were chunkier fishcakes than she expected, so if this is for 2 half the quantities.  

You will need: 
1kg of white fish, I used haddock 
2 tbsp Thai fish sauce 
2 tbsp red curry paste 
4 tbsp chopped coriander 
4 spring onions 
2 eggs 
Good large pinch of dried chilli
Juice and zest of 2 limes
Panko (Japanese) Breadcrumbs 
A bit of plain flour 
Some more eggs to coat fishcakes 

For the dipping sauce:
 4 tbsp honey 
2 tbsp white wine vinegar 
1 and a half small onions, finely diced
4 tbsp ketchup
2 tbsp chopped mint

 Start by making the dip. I wasn't going to but Im so glad I did. The bowl practically got licked clean it was so good, a sort of sweet chilli. Never doubt Angela.

Put the honey in the a small pan with the vinegar, finely diced onion and ketchup, bring to the boil then remove from the heat and leave to cool. Add the fresh herbs just as you want to serve it. DONE. See easy as pie. 

Turn your attention to the fishcakes. Put all the ingredients into the magimix, bar the breadcrumbs and flour.

I just chopped up the fish to make it a bit easier for the machine.

Use the pulse setting to get a thoroughly mixed yet chunky mixture that looks a bit like this.

Not hugely attractive I will admit.

Thats it. All you now have to do is make the actual fishcakes.
Before you start pop your oven on to 180 degrees.

Now make the patties 

Now this is where I deviated slightly from the recipe, I made hearty chunk fish cakes and then breadcrumbed them to give them a nice crunchy exterior.

To do this first coat the fishcakes in flour, don't go mad! More like a light dusting. The pop them in the egg, and finally coat them in the breadcrumbs. 

Et voila. If you find the fish cakes are a bit wet and you are worried about them falling apart, just pop them in the fridge for a bit or even the freezer to firm up. If you were doing this in advance you could always just stop at this point.

Now fry them gently to get that lovely golden colour. 

And then finish them off in the oven for about 5 mins. 

I served these little babies up with some buttery minty new potatoes and salad.

Fruit bowl - optional 

They went down a storm! Plus they look really great too. 

We munched and drank our way through another successful dinner. 

These are the perfect things to make, as you could do them in 3 steps and well in advanced too. Prefect for the busy working person to wow people after work! 

They would also work very well as a starter, just serving one on a bed of watercress with a swish of sauce round the side. 

Pud came in the form of white chic chunk fudge brownies and ice cream. 

I mean we had salad with mains! We had to bulk to out somewhere! 

Many more dishes to be tried and tested Cam, when are you next free? 

1 comment:

  1. These looks really lovely (although I'm even more tempted by the brownies!!)

    I'll definitely be taking a look when I have some time this weekend and I'm cooking for the family!

    S xo.