“When cod is as plentiful as it is in Scandinavia, a number of preparations emerge from the regional cuisine. Fish cakes are among my favorite. Not altogether different from crab cakes–but generally less pricey–these salty little patties make a fine meal alongside a pile of simply boiled potatoes and buttery green peas.
“The ingredients for traditional Scandinavian fish cakes are simple: whitefish, salt, and pepper (maybe white pepper), potato starch or cornstarch, milk, eggs, nutmeg, and chives. I’ve added a little more in the way of flavoring, just because it’s the way I like it.”
And while we’re on the topic of springtime recipes, I recently shared a roundup of Scandinavian and Nordic-inspired recipes that would be perfect for this time of the year. It features everything from savory dishes like broiled mussels with dill butter (one of my favorite easy appetizers) and smørbrød with pickled herring, egg salad, watercress, and dill to sweets such as chilled rhubarb soup and Kvæfjordkake (also known as “world’s best cake”). Check out the recipe roundup by clicking here.
Then be sure to give these Scandinavian fish cakes with remoulade a try!
Scandinavian Fish Cakes with Remoulade
By Daytona Strong, from my book “The Pescatarian Cookbook for Beginners”
1/4cuplightly chopped fresh herbs(e.g., parsley and dill)
2tablespoonscapersdrained and rinsed
1tablespoonfreshly squeezed lemon juice
For the fish cakes
1 1/2poundscod filletscut into small pieces
1small onionroughly chopped
3tablespoonsmelted butterplus 2 tablespoons at room temperature
2scallionswhite and light-green parts only, chopped
1/4cupfinely chopped fresh parsley
1/4cupfinely chopped fresh dill
2tablespoonsfreshly squeezed lemon juice
To make the remoulade
In a medium bowl, stir together the mayonnaise, pickles, herbs, capers, mustard, lemon juice, and salt. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
To make the fish cakes
Put the cod on a paper-towel-lined plate and lightly sprinkle with salt. Let sit for 10 minutes. Using a paper towel, wipe away the moisture and any excess salt. You're drawing out the moisture here rather than seasoning the fish.
In a food processor, finely chop the onion. Add the cod and pulse to break down the fish a bit. Add 3 tablespoons of melted butter, the eggs, scallions, parsley, dill, and lemon juice. Process until almost smooth. Add the flour and process until smooth and combined. (You can make the fish cakes up to this point, 1 to 2 hours in advance, just keep the fixture refrigerated.)
Wet your hands and form the fish mixture into 12 balls. Slightly flatten each and place the cakes on a paper-towel-lined plate while you work so they continue to release excess moisture.
In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the oil and remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Carefully place teh patties into the pan, working in batches if needed. Cook for about 5 minutes per side until golden outside and cooked through. Serve with the remoulade.
Meal Prep Tip: Making the remoulade ahead allows the flavors to meld as well as saves you time while cooking. Simply refrigerate for up to a couple days until you’re ready to use it.