Spicy Fried Fish Balls by Dapur Sinolin
FOR THE FISH BALLS:
- 4 shallots, sliced
- 4 Thai chilies, sliced
- 4 kaffir lime leaves, stems and spines removed
- 1 2-inch length of fresh or frozen (and thawed) turmeric, peeled and trimmed
- ½ lemon grass stalk, outer layers removed, core thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon ground coriander
- ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1 pound cod filets, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 4 ounces salted mackerel, boned and skinned, cut into 1-inch cubes, or 4 ounces anchovies
- 2 eggs
- ⅔ cup coconut milk
- 4 to 5 tablespoons rice flour
FOR THE DIPPING SAUCE:
- 2 Thai chilies, minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 shallot, minced
- Freshly squeezed juice of 1/2 lime
- 1 tablespoon chinchalok
- Canola oil or peanut oil for frying
- 2 cups panko bread crumbs
- To make fish balls, pound shallots, chilies, lime leaves, turmeric, lemon grass, ground coriander and pepper to a paste in a mortar and pestle, or use a food processor. Transfer to bowl.
- In food processor, blend cod and mackerel to a smooth paste. Add eggs. Gradually pulse in aromatics and coconut milk, alternating ingredients, until incorporated. Pulse in rice flour until you can form paste into a ball.
- To make sauce, whisk remaining ingredients, other than oil and panko, in a bowl.
- In a saucepan or wok, heat 3 inches oil to 375 degrees. Meanwhile, grind panko in a food processor or mortar and pestle. Using wet hands, roll fish paste into 2-inch balls. Dip balls into panko and coat evenly. Fry, turning frequently, until golden brown all over, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on a paper-towel-lined plate. Serve with dipping sauce.