Mackerel and noodle salad, cashew and lime dressing

Mackerel and noodle salad, cashew and lime dressing

By
From
Everyday Seafood
Serves
4

I adore mackerel and my favourite food to eat out is Asian, so I was keen to bring the two together. I created this salad for a party at home from the Asian ingredients I had in my kitchen cupboards. The texture of the mackerel and its natural oiliness work beautifully with the Asian flavourings. Saying that, you could put any oily fish with this dish – sardines would be a fantastic alternative.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
4 mackerel, filleted, trimmed and pin-boned
1 litre sunflower oil, for deep-frying
3 banana shallots, peeled and finely sliced, separated into rings
100g plain flour
100g cashew nuts
sea salt

For the noodle salad

Quantity Ingredient
300g dried noodles
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into fine julienne
4 spring onions, finely sliced
50g fresh ginger, grated
4 garlic cloves, peeled and grated
a bunch radishes, finely sliced
a handful mint leaves, roughly chopped
a handful coriander leaves

For the cashew and lime dressing

Quantity Ingredient
100ml fish sauce
2 limes, zest finely grated and juiced
75g palm sugar or soft brown sugar
1 shallot, peeled and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled and grated
1 red chilli, halved, deseeded and sliced

Method

  1. Heat the oil for deep-frying in a deep, heavy pan to 170°C. Toss the shallot rings through the flour seasoned with salt, shaking off any excess (save for the mackerel). Fry the shallot rings in the hot oil until golden and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Season the shallots with salt and set aside to cool.
  2. Next, fry the cashews in the oil for 2–3 minutes until golden. Lift out of with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Season with salt and put to one side.
  3. Pass the mackerel through the flour and knock off any excess. Fry 4 fillets at a time for 3 minutes. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Season with salt and leave to cool.
  4. For the salad, bring a pan of water to the boil, add salt, then drop in the noodles and take off the heat. Leave to soften for 3 minutes, then drain the noodles well in a colander (excess water will dilute the dressing).
  5. Heat a large frying pan or wok and add a drizzle of the oil from the fish pan. When hot, add the carrots, spring onions, ginger and garlic. Stir-fry for 2 minutes until the veg start to soften. Remove and set aside.
  6. To make the dressing, put the fish sauce, lime juice and sugar into a pan over a medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. Take off the heat and add the shallot, garlic, chilli and lime zest.
  7. To assemble, put the noodles, stir-fried veg and dressing into a large bowl and toss well. Add the radishes, mint and most of the coriander and toss again. Taste for seasoning, and add a little more salt if required. Arrange on a large platter or divide between 4 bowls.
  8. Break the mackerel into chunks and place on top of the salad. Finally, scatter over the fried cashews, shallots and remaining coriander leaves. Serve at room temperature or warm.
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