Spicy Thai fish cakes

If you’ve never tried these world famous Thai fish cakes before, here’s you chance, with an easy recipe.

Most Thai cooks use baking soda in this recipe, to make the cakes puffier, but it is optional – if you add it, the cakes will rise nicely but fall back 2 minutes after frying. If you don’t, they will be more solid.

Thai fish cakes (tod man pla)

Ingredients (for about 15 cakes):

250 gr ground fish (any kind of fish will do)

¼ cup finely chopped ginger

2 tablespoons finely sliced lemon grass (only the white part)

¼ cup finely sliced shallots

1-2 tablespoons red curry paste

2-3 tablespoons Thai fish sauce

1-2 teaspoons sugar (preferably palm sugar)

1 beaten egg

3 drops of kaffir lime oil 5%

1 cup finely sliced (3 mm) fresh long beans (or green beans)

1 teaspoon baking soda (optional)

oil for deep frying


Crush the ginger, shallots and lemon grass into a fine paste, using a mortar and a pestle or any other kind of grinding device.

In a bowl, mix the the fish sauce with 3 drops of kaffir lime oil. Make sure the oil is well dissolved.

Add the curry paste and the sugar and mix.

Add the ground fish, the beaten egg, the sliced beans and the ground spices. At this point you can also add the baking soda.

Mix thoroughly.

Heat the oil in a wok or a frying pan on a medium flame.

Wet you palms, create flat, freely shaped cakes and slide them into the oil.

Fry carefully until golden brown on both sides and drain.

Serve with Thai cucumber relish.


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