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How do I get rid of the bitterness in my fish cake mixture?

One of our readers wrote in asking for help. They want to know how to get rid of the bitter taste in their fish cake mixture.

"I have no dietary restrictions except for kosher meat. This is my own recipe. I used steamed hake n steen bass fish, bread crumbs, lemon juice, crushed chillies, crushed cumin, crushed coriander, fresh mint, fresh coriander, fresh crushed chillies, eggs to bind, a little dried mixed herbs, and a little black pepper."

Friends, can you help?

Laura is a Customer Care Associate at Food52 & Provisions

asked over 2 years ago
4 answers 1154 views
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Pegeen is a trusted home cook.

added over 2 years ago

I think the writer might want to play with the herbs. Two kinds of coriander (fresh and also crushed - I assume that means dried) could cause some bitterness, plus hard to know what's in the mixed dried herbs. So can fresh mint cause bitterness. I would play around with eliminating the mint and coriander and see how that tastes.

A little trick to test out the new mixture, before frying all of it up into cakes, is to make the new fish mixture, put a very small-sized ball of it in the microwave, cook it for 45 seconds to a minute on high and taste. Of course it won't taste as nice as a breaded, fried fish cake, but it will provide at least some idea of the new taste.

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added over 2 years ago

Perhaps the cook should check her dried herbs and spices to see if they are past their prime. A sniff test of the contents in the bottle should do the trick. Although old dried herbs and spices are known to lose flavor, I've found that they can impart "off" flavors as well.

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added over 2 years ago

I should add that the cook should also check the bread crumbs if not using fresh ones.

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added over 2 years ago

I love fish cakes made with a mashed potato base. They are always creamy and delish. The coriander you have doubled up may account for the bitter taste.

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