A welcome combination of my recipes for potato cakes and sardine fritters, these Sardine Fish Cakes provide yet another inexpensive way of fitting fish into a frugal diet. Trust me, these cakes really are the perfect way to see out a hard week at work, served alongside a wedge of lemon, a hearty portion of chips and a ramekin of tartare sauce.
There are myriad different ways to make fish cakes, but they always contain both potato, which give them body, and fish. How you prepare your ingredients will determine the feel of your fish cakes; they’ll either be robust or delicate. This recipe yields very light fish cakes, which melt like butter on your tongue and cut beautifully.
I’m aware that many of you probably prefer heavier fish cakes. To achieve this, simply under boil your potatoes and mash them less thoroughly. You could even coat yours in breadcrumbs for that traditional, crispy feel.
Of course, don’t feel you have to stick to sardines; tinned salmon or mackerel would do the job just as well. If you’re willing to spend a little more you could even spice things up a little with some good-quality traditionally smoked haddock from Grimsby. Indeed, so versatile are these fish cakes that you’re sure to come back again and again
Sardine Fish Cakes
• 2 tins of sardines in oil or brine (88g drained per tin)
• 300g potatoes, peeled
• 1 tbsp cream cheese
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 50g white bread crumbs
• 3 tbsp fresh dill, finely chopped
• A twist of black pepper
• A pinch of salt
• lemon wedges, to serve
• Oil for frying
1. Bring your potatoes to the boil in a little salted water. Once cooked through set aside to cool. Meanwhile, empty the sardines into a mixing bowl and break into chunks.
2. Mash the potatoes until broken but not completely smooth and add to the fish along with the cheese, oil, bread crumbs, dill, black pepper and salt. Fold everything together gently and form the mixture into 6-8 patties. Pop them in the fridge for 30 minutes.
3. Heat a generous amount of oil in a heavy-based frying pan and cook your fish cakes four at a time until golden brown on each side. Serve with a wedge of lemon or lime.
Cost: Tinned fish is always relatively cheap, as such these fish cakes are pleasingly cost-effective. Indeed, you should be able to produce the whole batch for no more than £1.50.