This soy and honey parcels recipe is one we do in the cookery school and it is very popular on our ‘Parent & Child’ course. I find more Irish people than ever are enjoying fish and I notice the change over the years in the restaurant. This is a sweet and sour sauce and it works well with hake, monkfish, or trout. I sometimes serve this with brown rice, or with some potatoes and a salad.

I always have some smoked haddock in the freezer. It is a fish I enjoy and for many years the restaurant has been supplied by the wonderful Sally Barnes of Woodcock Smokery in Skibbereen. Sally smokes wild fish only and in 2022 was given a richly deserved Lifetime Achievement Award by the Irish Food Writers’ Guild.

The curry in this recipe gives a nice kick and works well with haddock. You could also use it with prawns or salmon. The lemon mayonnaise is very versatile and goes well with wraps or fish fingers.

Happy Cooking,


Soy and honey salmon parcels with tenderstem broccoli

Serves 4

2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

2 tbsp light soy sauce

2 tbsp clear honey

Juice of 1 lime

1 garlic clove, crushed

Rapeseed oil, for brushing

4 x 100g (4oz) salmon fillets,

pinboned and skin removed

250g (9oz) tenderstem broccoli,


2.5cm (1in) piece of root ginger,

peeled and cut into matchsticks

Steamed basmati rice, to serve

Finely chopped spring onions, to garnish

1 Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F/gas mark 6).

2 Whisk together the sesame seeds, soy sauce, honey, lime juice and garlic. Set aside.

3 Using a scissors, cut out four squares of tin foil, about 50cm (20in) per square. Brush each piece of foil with oil and sit a piece of salmon on top.

4 Blanch the tenderstem broccoli for one minute, then drain and refresh in a bowl of iced water. Scatter the ginger over the pieces of salmon, then arrange the blanched broccoli on top of and around each fillet.

5 Spoon over the soy sauce mixture and drizzle each one with about ½ teaspoon of oil. Fold over the edges of the foil together to seal and arrange the parcels on a baking sheet.

6 Cook the salmon parcels in the oven for 10 minutes, until the salmon

is just cooked through and tender but still nice and moist in the middle. Leave for an extra few minutes if you prefer your salmon more well done.

7 To serve, place a salmon parcel on each warmed plate with a separate bowl of rice garnished with some spring onions.

Aromatic fish cakes with lemon mayonnaise

Serves 4-6

1kg (2¼lb) floury potatoes,

peeled and diced

175g (6oz) mixed frozen vegetables

(such as sweetcorn and peas)

400g (14oz) salmon fillet

300ml (½ pint) milk

1 bunch of spring onions,

trimmed and thinly sliced

1 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1 tsp mild curry paste

4 tbsp plain flour

2 eggs, beaten

100g (4oz) panko (toasted natural breadcrumbs)

1 tbsp sesame seeds

4 tbsp sunflower oil

Mixed salad leaves, to serve

For the lemon mayonnaise

6 tbsp mayonnaise

1 lemon, halved

2 tbsp snipped fresh chives

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 Cook the potatoes in a large pan of boiling salted water for 15–20 minutes, until tender.

2 Cook the frozen vegetables in a pan of salted water for 2–3 minutes or according to the packet instructions. Drain and refresh under cold running water to prevent them from cooking further.

3 Meanwhile, place the salmon in a large pan, pour over the milk, then cover and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and leave the fish to finish cooking in the hot milk.

4 Drain the potatoes and return to the pan, then mash well until smooth. Beat in the vegetables, spring onions, parsley and curry paste.

5 Transfer the cooked salmon to a plate with a fish slice. Break up the flesh into rough flakes, discarding any skin and bones. Gently fold the flaked salmon into the mashed potato mixture with the vegetables. Season to taste.

6 Using a small ice cream scoop, shape the salmon and potato mixture into 18 even-sized balls, then using slightly wetted hands, shape into patties. Arrange on a baking sheet and leave to cool completely, then cover with cling film and chill in the fridge for at least two hours (overnight is best) to allow the fish cakes to firm up.

7 Place the flour on a plate and season generously. Put the beaten eggs in a shallow dish and place the breadcrumbs and sesame seeds in a separate dish. Dust the chilled fish cakes in the seasoned flour, then carefully dip them in the beaten eggs, then coat in the sesame breadcrumbs.

8 Heat the oil in a non-stick skillet and fry the fishcakes until they are golden brown all over and cooked through. Keep the finished ones warm in a warm oven while the remainder cook.

9 Make the mayonnaise by combining all of the listed ingredients in a bowl. Set aside or chill until ready to serve.

10 Serve the hot fishcakes with salad greens, a generous dollop of the lemon mayonnaise and freshly chopped chives.

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