Herby Fish Cakes + Polenta Chips {Gluten Free}

FIsh CakesEarlier this week, we received a delivery from the lovely people at Ocean Mile of an enormous, heavy box. Inside lay a glistening Pemba Bay Kob. When I was told I would be getting a delivery of one of these, I had in no way expected it to be this big. I mean, it was gigantic! Once I had cleaned Bubbles up and had him ready for baking, he weighed a solid 3.5KG. I told you it was huge! Also, for a fish that has been sea farmed, I thought this was pretty exceptional. You see, the guys in Aqua Pemba, based in Mozambique, work tirelessly to provide a safe environment for the growth of these sea farmed Kob beauties but you can read more about the project here.

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Fish Cakes Aerial

I hummed and hawwed over what recipes I would like to do. The obvious choice was Fish & Chips but I wanted something a bit lighter to match this toasty hot weather we are experiencing right now. Which is funny to think because as I write this, a thunder storm has just hit Joburg after what was a stunning blue skied day. Welcome to Summer! I digress, back Bubbles! So I went back through my archives and thought about some fishy recipes I had learned in Culinary School. There was this one dish we made with poached monkfish in a red pepper sauce. On that same day, myself and a classmate decided to brave the idea of making pasta and so we combined the two and served them up to the lunch time diners. A major hit, there was demands for more but not enough made, sadly. So that was one recipe ticked off the list but looking at this beast, I thought I am going to have a ton of leftovers. Firstly, we baked the Kob, scaling it, scoring the skin and stuffing it with fennel, chili and lemons. Once it was roasted, I made the red pepper sauce. Divine. It was so good and inhaled in a matter of moments with some delightfully crispy roast potatoes. Recipe to come. So what to do with the remaining 4/6 of our Bubbles. Well, I promptly assembled some fish cakes the following evening and an even bigger success. We just couldn’t do any wrong with this fish. It really just fitted in everywhere. The most popular fish in town!!

Fish Cakes Stack

Before we get to the recipe, I also wanted to share with you the sheer delight I have for my new blog layout. I’ve been thinking about a change for so long and when I contacted Cathal about the task, he happily took it on. Over the last few months he has patiently put up with my nagging emails and constant questions about the silliest of technical things. I am so not technically minded so I can only imagine I blew a fuse or two on him! In the end, Cathal came up with a gorgeous layout dedicated to visuals. I’m definitely more of a visual person so I have completely fallen in love with the way it looks. There’s lots of new categories to flick through making it easier to find blog posts associated with Ballymaloe, Irish Living Abroad and then all of the new recipe categories. So, go mad!

After sticking with the same blog look for the last couple of years, I love popping onto the site now just to have a look at it. I’m sure the novelty will wear off, but for the moment I’m relishing in it! Now, recipe time….


{Herby Fish Cakes}

Makes 10 medium or 4 large fish cakes

25g Butter

1 Onion, finely diced

1/2 Red Pepper, finely diced

230g Leftover Fish {KOB}

100g Mashed Potatoes

2 tbspns herbs {Parsley, Chives, Chervil}

1 organic egg

Salt and Pepper


In a frying pan, melt the butter and add the onion and pepper. Sweat for 5 minutes until soft but not coloured. Set aside to cool.

In a mixing bowl, combine the mashed potato, fish and herbs.

Mix through the onion and red pepper and add salt and pepper to taste.

Shape into rounds and refrigerate until needed.

Shallow fry for a few minutes on either side until golden brown.


{Coriander Aioli}

2 organic egg yolks

1 tspn french mustard

1 tspn cider vinegar

1tbspn chopped corinader

2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed

200-250ml oil {I use either sunflower or avocado oil}

Salt, Pepper

Lemon juice, to taste


In a mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, mustard, coriander, garlic and salt and pepper.

Slowly pour in the oil, whisking all the time. Trickling it very carefully into the bowl.

Once the Aioli has come together, jar and refrigerate until needed.


{Polenta Chips – Recipe adapted from The Ballymaloe Cookery School}

225g Coarse Maize Meal

1.7 litres water

1 level dessertspoon salt

110g butter, cubed

50g freshly grated Parmesan,

3 tbspns chopped Basil

Salt and Pepper


In a wide based, heavy saucepan, bring the water to the boil. Add in a dessertspoon of dairy salt.

Put the maize meal into a jug with a lip on it and carefully pour into the water. It should take a couple of minutes to this. Go slowly!

Once the maize is completely in the water, whisk for a few minutes until all the lumps have disappeared and it is dissolved.

Now the maize will take at least 40 minutes to cool. Ideally stir with a wooden spoon every 4 minutes.

Once cooked, add in the butter, parmesan and basil.

Once cooked, pour the polenta into a greased swiss roll tray (10inx15in) and leave to cool for about 30 minutes or overnight in the fridge.

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 180°C.

Line a baking tray with baking paper and grease.

Slice the slab of polenta into chip size pieces and brush with oil.

Bake for 30 minutes, turning halfway.

Serve with Herby Fish Cakes, Coriander Aioli and Green Salad.

Fish Cakes 3

Fish Cakes Aioli


Disclosure: Ocean Mile and Aqua Pemba provided me with a Pemba Bay Kob. I chose to write a recipe and blog for it. Opinions are my own.

One Response to “Herby Fish Cakes + Polenta Chips {Gluten Free}”

  1. ANGELA HUNT says:

    Brilliant, can’t wait to make these ;)

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