Monday, October 24, 2011

Panfried Hake with Potato Crab Cake – A Sofishticated Dish!

Pin It The fact that I live a stone’s throw from Glendalough made it easy to persuade some English friends to make a long-overdue visit to Ireland.  Glendalough was not the only attraction. Here’s how my sales pitch went:

Fishing for compliments: Pan-fried Hake with Potato & Crab Cakes and Spicy Tomato Sauce

·        We’re less than an hour’s low cost flight away...
·        Your English pound will stretch so far against the euro you’ll think it’s made of elastic...
·        We have sunshine 365 days of the year – ok that’s stretching it slightly but not my fault the sunshine is above the clouds J

I promised them a céad míle fáilte (the hundred thousand welcomes, compulsory under Irish law).  I promised them the countryside would soothe their stressed-out souls with its wild beauty.  I promised them that the food would get their taste buds dancing like Michael Flatley. The Guinness got them thinking they could dance like Michael Flatley – but that’s another story...
Their timing made them the perfect guineapigs for my Irish Food Bloggers Association Salon du Blog creation...
Potato + Crab + Chillies = Hot Stuff!!!
These friends are pescatarians. Woohoo! Give me fish and potato in any form and I’m one happy girl. This magical combination can be moules frites and a glass of Rosé... sigh ... or fish n chips eaten from the paper while seagulls swoop ever closer in an attempt to share in the feast. However, sometimes a girl needs something a little more so-fish-ticated...  

Don’t be put off by the list of ingredients - most, you will already have in the cupboard. Everything except for the fish can be prepared in advance.

For 4 servings you will need...

Spicy Tomato Sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 fat garlic cloves, crushed
300mls pasata (or a tin of tomatoes, sieved)

1 red chilli, finely chopped
1 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
a pinch of salt
freshly ground black pepper

To make the tomato sauce, heat the olive oil in a saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion and garlic. Lower the heat and cook gently for about 5 minutes until the onion has softened without colouring. Then add in the remaining ingredients and let the sauce bubble gently for about 10 minutes until most of the liquid has evaporated.

Oh crumbs!

Potato Crab Cakes
400g Rooster potatoes, boiled, then ‘riced’ or mashed and cooled
200g crab meat
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
1 green chilli, finely chopped
3 spring onions, finely chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh coriander
1 egg, beaten
½ teaspoon salt
 ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper

3 tablespoons plain flour
1 large egg, beaten
125g fresh breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 180°C (fan)

1          In a large mixing bowl, combine the first 9 ingredients. Divide the mixture into 4 even portions and form into cakes or patties about 2.5cm (1 inch) thick.
2          Set out three plates or shallow dishes, one each for the flour, the breadcrumbs and the beaten egg. Dust each potato cake with flour, then dip in egg and cover with breadcrumbs. [If preparing in advance, cover and place in the fridge at this stage. Place in a pre-heated oven about 15 minutes before you start cooking the fish.]
3          Bake in the preheated oven until golden brown - 20-25 minutes

Tanned? Me? Well, just a bit...

4 boneless fillets of hake, each about 180g
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Fresh coriander to garnish

Fish - the ultimate fast food!

1          Brush each fillet with oil and sprinkle with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper. Meanwhile, heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Place the fillets – skin side down – in the hot pan and cook for 5 minutes. Then, using a fish slice, carefully turn the fillets and turn off the pan, allowing the fillets to continue cooking in the residual heat while you assemble the dish.  To assemble, divide the tomato sauce between 4 warm plates. Sit a potato crab cake on top and finally sit the hake on top and add some fresh coriander.

A saucy little creation!

Bask in the compliments as your friends sigh happily and start planning their next trip to Ireland. Pin It