Sri Lankan 🇱🇰 Fish Patties

By Home cook Sharmini Jayawardena

These fish patties are a great afternoon tea delectable and a party time favourite. They are a great snack and one of many finger foods known as short eats in Sri Lanka.

Ingredients for pastry

230 gms all purpose flour
2 tbls butter
3/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 lime juice
1/4 cup cold water

1. In a bowl add flour salt and mix. Add the butter 🧈 and rub it in to the flour, pinching it to resemble course crumbs.
2. Add the lime juice and 1 tbls of cold water 💦 at a time and keep mixing, then folding like in the pic below ⬇️. This is to let air into the pastry and make it light and flakey. Form the pastry into a ball.

3. Flatten the pastry lightly, wrap it in plastic wrap and keep it in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Proceed to make the filling. I made a fish filling out of a fresh slice of Seer/Tingiri/Mackerel fish.

Ingredients for boiling fish

130 gms fresh fish or substitute with canned fish minus the liquid. (I used only half of the fish for this recipe. So roughly 65 gms.)
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper powder
1/2 tsp white vinegar
1” piece Ceylon cinnamon

2 small potatoes

1. Wash the slice of fish 🐠 🐟 🎣. Marinade in all of the above spice ingredients for 5 minutes. Cover and set aside.
2. Meanwhile, boil the potatoes 🥔, peel and mash, leaving a few lumps.
3. Boil the fish in a pan, covering half the slice of fish with water. Boil until dry. Remove from fire and leave it to cool.
4. Remove all bones and skin carefully.
5. In a bowl, break the fish in to flakes and set aside.

Ingredients to make the filling

2 small onions or 1/2 medium sized big onion, chopped
2 green chilies, chopped
1/2 tsp curry mix
1/2 tsp chili powder
A few curry leaves
2” rampa/pandan leaf
1 tbls vegetable or coconut oil
3/4 tsp sea salt
Enough vegetable or coconut oil to submerge the patties in, when deep frying the patties.

1. Add oil to a frying pan or shallow pan. Heat the oil on low heat. Add the chopped onions 🧅, chopped green chilies, curry leaves and pandan leaf and fry until onions are translucent.

2. Add the curry mix and chili powder and mix.

3. Add the fish flakes to the mixture and mix well. Remove from fire.

4. Add the potato to the curry and mix well. Check for seasoning. Remove some of the curry leaves and all the stems from the filling and make in to 1 tsp size balls. Set aside.

5. Your filling is ready.

To make the patties

1. Take the pastry out of the refrigerator. Divide in to two portions. Sprinkle some flour on your pastry board, roll out the pastry on the board with a rolling pin or a long empty bottle. Flatten the pastry to 1/8 of an inch thickness. Cut the pastry with a pastry cutter. I used a Vietnamese coffee maker 😁.

2. Cut out the circle and stretch it out into a square shape. Place 1 ball of filling in the centre of the pastry and fold it in to a triangle. Press down on the sides of the triangle closer to the ball of filling. With a sharp knife cut the folded pastry on the two sides to make a neat and compact triangle.

3. I need to say here, that according to my mother, the original shape of a fish patty is a triangle.

4. Proceed to use every bit of pastry by repeatedly rolling out and making as many patties as possible to utilize all the pastry.

5. Heat oil in a wok or a deep bottomed pan for deep frying.

6. When the oil is ready and adequately heated, place the patties carefully, three at a time with a frying spoon, in the pan. Keep frying at medium flame until they are a golden brown.

7. Drain with the spoon into a plate lined with kitchen paper to drain out excess oil from the patties. Let it cool a while and serve them warm.

Enjoy 😉
Makes 22 patties

The Elegance that is Afternoon Tea☕

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