Thursday, August 15, 2013

Sri Lankan Cutlets- Tuna Fish: Version 2 (Throwback Thursday)

2011 Photo
Sri Lankan Cutlets are a traditional party fare for any dinner or cocktail party.  My kids are huge fans of these breaded and fried little balls of savory goodness. You can make a cutlet with any meat/seafood you wish, but I really prefer the tuna fish variety.  I have made a very plain version of this cutlet in the early days of my blog, but I have been wanting to make my favorite version of this beloved appetizer/side dish/ snack for while now.  I could not fry these little balls fast enough for my family to enjoy.  My kids love to butter some bread and smash a cutlet between the slices of bread and eat them as sandwiches. Okay...I taught them that.  I have never met a person that did not love some variety of cutlets.  They are simply delectable!

 Note: Throwback Thursday is a new series where I take some of my original posts here on  Curry and Comfort and redo them so I can take better photos

3 (5-oz) cans of light tuna fish in water drained
1 medium onion finely chopped
1-2 green chillies finely chopped
2 boiled large white potatoes crushed
Small handful of curry leaves minced
Small handful of mint leaves minced
1 Tbs of ginger garlic paste (or 1/2 Tbs each separately)
1/2 medium lime juiced (about 2-3 tsp)
salt and a lot of black pepper
For breading and frying:
bread crumbs for breading
2 eggs beaten well
1/2 bottle of oil for frying (I used Canola)


Step 1:  Boil potatoes.  Peel and smash with a fork into a coarse mash.

Step 2: Cut onions, green chilies and curry leaves.  Heat 1Tbs of oil in a frying pan and add the onions, chilies, mint and curry leaves to fry.  Then add the garlic and ginger paste and fry for another minute.

Salt and pepper the onions and then add the 3 cans of tuna drained.  Then add the lime juice.

Add the boiled (mashed) potatoes and mix in well.

Mix together well and taste for the salt and pepper in the dish now that the potatoes have been added.

I like to give my cutlets a peppery kick so I'm heavy on the pepper.   Take off the stove and allow to cool completely so you can handle the mixture with your hands to form the cutlets
The breading deep frying process:

Time to form the cutlets. Grab a small handful and slowly form into balls (mine were about the size of a walnut). The most important part here is to make sure you don't have any cracks. If you have a crack then the cutlet will burst open when frying.

The egg wash: Beat 2 medium eggs together with a tablespoon of cool water for dipping the cutlets before breading.

Breadcrumbs: I made my own by grinding some heals of bread in the blender or you can buy prepared breadcrumbs.  I don't recommend using seasoned bread crumbs.

Once you have dipped the cutlets into the egg wash and then the bread crumbs, the breaded cutlets are all ready for frying. Get this all done before you move onto the frying.

Heat the oil in a deep enough pan that you immerse the entire cutlet for cooking.  I started heating my oil at a medium/high heat on my stove.  I first dropped a few breadcrumbs in the oil to see if the oil was hot enough for frying. Once they browned, I knew the oil was nice and hot. 
** you do not want the oil screaming hot where it's smoking. That will burn your cutlets.

 Once fried, drain cutlets on a paper towel.  I made about 28-30 cutlets total.  Serve hot or at room temperature. You can make large batches of these and freeze them as well.  Then you just have to defrost on the counter and put them in a warm oven to heat through.  Enjoy.

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