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Thai Fish Cakes or Tod Mun Pla


Why make your own fishcakes? A big problem with supermarket Thai fish cakes (and those in many restaurants outside Thailand) is that they have invariably been produced using an industrial version of a food processor. You can never get the correct texture using a food processor regardless of the fish that you use. This is something you do by hand in a mixing bowl. You can also use a kneading attachment in a food mixer.  The taste will also be far superior to anything you can buy, hopefully that will be reason enough so let’s get started!



It’s not difficult to get the taste right in Thai fish cakes, the trick is getting the texture right. For me this works best using rainbow trout which are easy to obtain and as I explained in the notes above, preferable to using salmon which many other recipes seem to use.

1 packet of My Thai Curry Red Curry paste.

2 Eggs

800 g Rainbow Trout fillets.

300 g Green beans

10g of Kaffir lime leaves

20 g Cornflour

10g Sea salt

Thai Sweet Basil for decoration (optional).

Vegetable Oil for frying.


A picture is worth a thousand words so it would be helpful to familiarise yourself with the technique of “scraping” the flesh of the fish as shown in the images above, as this is an important part of getting the texture right.

Using the edge of a spoon scrape the flesh away from the skin of the fish.

Put the fish scrapings in the bowl along with the sea salt and knead to a paste. I prefer to do this by hand using disposable gloves but you can also do it with a spatula or wooden spoon. The key is to allow the mixture to thicken and get sticky which normally takes about five minutes.

Add the curry paste, the eggs, and the cornflour. Stir these through the mixture until they are completely blended and leave to stand whilst chopping the Kaffir LIme leaves (if using) and green beans. The technique for cutting the lime leaves finely is shown in the images above and is called a chiffonade.

Combine these with the fish mixture stirring to make sure the mixture is firmly blended and then store in the fridge for two or more hours. Whilst the fridge is not an essential step it does make the mixture easier to handle.

Form the fish cake mixture into round discs about 5 to 7 cm in diameter. This is easier to do if you keep your hands moistened with a little water.

Heat enough vegetable oil to cover fishcakes in a small pan or wok and cook in small batches for a few minutes turning once.


The fishcakes can also be formed into balls and grilled on skewers as above. Serve with sweet chili sauce and crispy fried Thai basil leaves (optional).

It’s worth making a large batch as they freeze very well!

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Dinner Lunch Starter
  • Method: Stove top, grill
  • Cuisine: Thai


  • Serving Size: At least 6 per serving
  • Calories: 397
  • Sugar: 3.9 g
  • Sodium: 794.1 mg
  • Fat: 25.8 g
  • Saturated Fat: 4.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 9.8 g
  • Fiber: 2.5 g
  • Protein: 31.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 140.7 mg

Keywords: Thai Fish Cakes, Fish,

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