Recipe 2 : Thai style prawn cakes
2 lbs peeled, raw shrimp
3 spring onions, (scallions), sliced finely
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 inch piece ginger, chopped
1/2 chili pepper, seeds removed and chopped
a handful of fresh cilantro (coriander)
2 tbsp oil
1.5 tbsp fish sauce
2 tsp raw cane sugar
juice of one lime
1/2 can water chestnuts, chopped small
1 slice day old bread, whizzed to breadcrumbs in a processor or 2 tbsp breadcrumbs
Place the prawns, spring onions, ginger, garlic, chili, cilantro, oil, fish sauce, sugar and lime juice in a blender or processor and puree coarsely until fairly smooth and well combined.
Remove from the processor and place into a bowl. Add the water chestnuts and breadcrumbs and mix well.
Shape the mixture into 6 burger or cake type shapes and dust with a little flour on both sides to help them firm up a little. Place the cakes on a plate, cover with cling wrap and refrigerate for about 20 minutes.
Heat enough peanut or vegetable oil in a frying pan to reach about 1/4 inch up the pan, over medium - high heat. Test the oil is hot enough by throwing in a small piece of bread and watching it sizzle. If it immediately starts bubbling quite furiously, the oil is ready. Add the prawn cakes and fry for about 3 - 4 minutes on both sides until golden brown, cooked through and crisp. Remove and drain on paper towels.
The breadcrumbs in the mix add a nice toasted texture and the water chestnuts add crunch and a really fresh taste. The cakes are great to eat alone or dipped into a sweet chili sauce.