Luxury fishcakes with tartare velouté

Give the humble fishcake a makeover by using crabmeat and panko breadcrumbs for extra crunch. The tartare sauce is velvety smooth and full of flavour

  • Prep:40 mins
    Cook:1 hrs 40 mins
  • Serves 6
  • More effort

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 582
  • fat 31g
  • saturates 14g
  • carbs 38g
  • sugars 6g
  • fibre 3g
  • protein 35g
  • salt 2g


  • 1 large red-skin potato (about 250g)
  • 250g smoked cod or haddock
  • 250g hake
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp English mustard
  • 500ml milk
  • 1 egg yolk, plus 2 eggs, beaten
  • 25g butter
  • 1 whole nutmeg, for grating
  • ½ lemon, zested and juiced
  • 100g mature cheddar, grated
  • 100g mixed white and brown crabmeat
  • 2 bunches of spring onions, finely chopped
  • 100g plain flour
  • 100g panko breadcrumbs
  • 4 tbsp sunflower oil, for frying
  • poached eggs, lemon wedges and pea shoots, to serve
  • 25g butter
  • 25g plain flour

  • 50ml double cream
  • squeeze of lemon
  • large handful parsley leaves, chopped
  • 2 tbsp capers, chopped


  1. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Stab the potato a few times and bake for about 1 hr or until soft. Cut the potato in half, scoop out the flesh and mash it, or pass through a ricer, and set aside. Meanwhile, put the fish in a shallow saucepan with the bay and mustard and season with salt and pepper. Pour the milk over, then place on a high heat. Once it’s simmering, turn off the heat, cover and leave for 10 mins.

  2. Put the dry mashed potato in a bowl and add the egg yolk, butter, a grating of nutmeg, lemon zest and juice, the cheddar, crabmeat and spring onions. Combine all the ingredients, then add 1 tbsp of the poaching milk. Taste the potato mix, add seasoning and mix well. Lift the fish out of the milk, pour the milk into a jug and set aside, then flake the fish through the mix, combining carefully to keep big chunks of it. Shape the mixture into six cakes. Put the flour, beaten egg and breadcrumbs in three separate bowls and dip each fishcake in each one, being sure to coat them evenly. Can be prepared up to two days ahead or frozen for one month.

  3. To make the sauce, heat the butter in a shallow saucepan until sizzling, then stir in the flour to make a sandy paste. Cook on a low heat for 2 mins, then gradually pour in the poaching milk. Add enough to make a silky sauce, then finish with the cream and simmer gently for 10 mins. Stir in some lemon juice, parsley and capers and season. Keep warm.

  4. To cook the fishcakes, heat the oil in a large, non-stick frying pan and cook for 4-5 mins on each side until dark golden and crisp. If your pan isn’t big enough to cook them all at once, keep them warm in a low oven. Place each cake on a plate, pour a generous amount of sauce around the outside and then top the fishcake with a softly poached egg. Serve with a few pea shoots and extra lemon wedges for squeezing over, if you like.

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