Goan Mackerel Croquettes recipe – the Goan-version of the popular fish cutlets, made with mackerel is inspired from Goa’s Portuguese heritage but there’s also a touch of Indian-ness with the clever use of spices.
Have you noticed how at a dinner party it is always the appetisers that steal the show? I’m both amused and a little bit irked at it. I slave and slave over the mains yet its always the easiest-to-put-together appetiser that everyone seems to polish off quickly with their drinks. In time I’ve learnt to focus my energy on making more-ish treats to begin with and these Goan mackerel croquettes always hit the spot! There’s never been a single one of them left over and there’s usually a little battle of sorts for the last one.
The Goan-version of the popular croquette is inspired from our Portuguese heritage (bears striking resemblance to the famed cod croquettes) as well as Spanish croquetas – but there’s also a touch of Indian-ness with the clever use of spices. Traditionally in Goa, these are coated with semolina but I prefer them with bread crumbs for a more visually and texturally better bite. Many a Goan bakery will usually have their variant of this croquette on their list of daily bakes and we all have our favourites.
My street food vendor of choice in Goa sells them sandwiched in a crusty Goan undo (bread) with a cabbage slaw beachside and I’ve spent many a Sunday evenings tucking into these. The recipe I share with you today is closest to how we make them at home, with a few changes I’ve made over time that further enhance every bite. One of those cheeky additions is the canned sardine fillets that I flake and add – they bring a certain surprise in taste in every other mouthful. It is not a mandatory step, but one I highly recommend. I also prefer using medium sized fresh mackerels instead of the large ones as the flesh holds its own much better.
Other than the element of tediously removing the fish flakes from the bones (which does take a fair bit of patience especially when making a big batch), the rest of the recipe is fairly easy. So grab that wok, get fryin!