In terms of texture, these zucchini “fish” cakes aren’t that much different from any zucchini cakes (or fritters or latkes) which you may have had before. What sets these little pancakes apart from the others is the flavors that are associated with traditional Thai fish cakes (Tod Man Pla).
Naturally, these zucchini cakes would go well with the same sweet and sour cucumber relish that is served with Tod Man Pla. But since we already have zucchini in the cakes, I opt instead for just Thai sweet chilli sauce with some chopped roasted peanuts mixed into it.
Zucchini “Fish” Cakes with Thai Sweet Chilli Sauce
Makes approximately 20 3-inch cakes
2 pounds (~1kg) zucchini
3 large eggs
2 ounces (57g) Thai red curry paste
1 1/2 cups (180g) rice flour
2 teaspoons (12g) salt
2 teaspoons (8g) baking soda
3 kaffir lime leaves, julienned
1/2-3/4 cup plain vegetable oil for frying
1 cup of store-bought or homemade Thai sweet chilli sauce
1/2 cup finely-chopped dry-roasted peanuts
- Grate the zucchini coarsely, skin and all. Place the grated zucchini in a large kitchen towel and wring out as much liquid as you possibly can. The crispiness of the zucchini cakes depends on how much liquid you can wring out of the grated zucchini at this point.
- Place the grated zucchini in a large mixing bowl. Stir in the red curry paste, baking soda, and salt, followed by the eggs, one at a time.
- Stir in the rice flour and kaffir lime leaves; mix well.
- In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat up 1/2 cup of oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot (but not smoking), drop the batter into it 1/4 cup at a time. Once one side is brown and crispy, turn over. Transfer the fried zucchini cakes to a paper towel-lined plate. Replenish the oil as necessary.
- If you’re not eating these cakes right away, arrange them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and bake them at 375°F until they’re heated through and the exteriors become crispy again.
- Serve the warm zucchini cakes with Thai sweet chilli sauce with some peanuts sprinkled on top or mixed in.