I am hosting a friend of mine for lunch and I am truly dreading her reaction to what I have chosen to make. I know I should not make the premature assumption that she is going to refuse to eat it; however, she has to be the pickiest eater around. That being said, I must offer her up some credit, as I know she is desperately trying to expand her palate. But back to my main concern…What do I make?
As much as I would love to I impress her with a fancy dish, I have decided to keep it simple, but take advantage of the fact that she is trying to be more open to things she would not normally eat. She has never been a fan of fish and this is something that everyone must acquire a taste for. Not only is it delicious when cooked properly, but fish is also extremely nutritious and a very important aspect of a healthy diet. For someone who is not used to eating fish, it is best to introduce them to a white fish first, as the fish taste is not really pronounced. This is precisely what I plan to do for my guest today.
Warning: This recipe includes potatoes
There is a strong bias against starchy vegetables, especially potatoes, in the Paleo community. Many current Paleo authors are aware that some of the recommendations made when the concepts behind Paleo were first created are wrong or biased. Those authors are now doing their best to change people’s opinions about things like carbohydrate intake and starchy vegetables. The new ideas are categorized under the term Paleo 2.0.
The truth is, carbohydrates are not the enemy. Excess carbohydrates or carbohydrates from toxic sources are. Grains, legumes and fructose are examples of toxic carbohydrates. In that sense, starchy carbohydrates are even safer than fruits for most healthy people because they are digested to glucose exclusively, instead of glucose and fructose in the case of fruits.
Potatoes have an especially bad reputation because they contain some saponins, mainly in their skin, so peeling them is a good idea. Even with their skin, potatoes haven’t been found to create any digestive issues in healthy people and it’s good to stay aware that all vegetables contain some levels of toxins. Of course, if you already react to other vegetables from the nightshade family, you should probably cut out potatoes too.
Furthermore, potatoes have been a part of the diet of very healthy and traditional cultures for a long time now. They are an excellent source of potassium, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and magnesium.
As I stated in my Paleo 2.0 article, starchy vegetables such as potatoes should be perfectly healthy for most people. Those with a seriously deranged metabolism usually fair better on a lower carbohydrate diet though and might find it difficult to limit their carbohydrate consumption, especially from starchy vegetables. Often, those people are able to reintroduce a higher amount of carbohydrates after their metabolism is repaired.
Keep in mind that you can really use any fish you like in this recipe. In addition, if you are not too keen on fish, feel free to cut back on the amount of fish so that the taste is not so strong. I would also recommend drizzling some fresh lemon juice over top of the finished product, as this will also help to lessen the flavors of the fish. A homemade tartar sauce made with paleo mayonnaise and chopped pickles is also a great sauce to go with those fish cakes.
Simple fish cake recipe
- A few tbsp of cooking fat;
- 12 oz (3/4 lb) of fresh Sole fillets;
- 4 large baking potatoes, peeled;
- 2 eggs;
- 1 tbsp of Dijon or homemade mustard;
- 2 green onions, chopped;
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste;
- Add potatoes to a pot of boiling water and cook until soft enough to mash.
- Season sole fillets with salt and pepper to taste.
- Line a hot skillet with cooking fat over a medium heat. Add the fillets and cook on each side until they are golden brown and cooked through. This should only take a few minutes, as Sole cooks quite quickly when prepared this way. It doesn’t matter if the fillets break apart during the cooking process.
- Once the potatoes are cooked through, drain the excess water and mash them in a large bowl.
- Add the fillets to the potatoes and break the fish apart with a fork while mixing it into the potatoes.
- Mix the eggs, mustard and onions in with the potatoes and fish and season the mixture to taste.
- Form the mixture into several thick patties/cakes (the quantity of patties will depend on the size you choose to make them)
- In a hot skillet, melt enough cooking fat to generously cover the bottom of the pan.
- Add the patties/cakes to the hot skillet and cook on both side until crispy and golden brown.
To make a well rounded meal, I recommend that you enjoy these cakes with a side of mixed greens with a simple vinaigrette of lemon juice and olive oil. And, will admit that I wasted too much time being concerned with her reaction, as she was quite pleased with the finished product. Enjoy!