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Monkfish and Tapioca Balls

These bite-sized balls are a really clever, fresh way to serve monkfish and make great canapes. If you're making these for a party or wedding, you can make the monkfish balls in advance, and freeze them if you like.


  • 200g / 7oz cooked (poached) monkfish, shredded finely

  • To poach the monkfish:

  • 150ml/ 5 fl oz water (to poach)

  • 50ml/ 2 fl oz white wine (to poach)

  • Bunch parsley stalks, leave removed (to poach)

  • 2 white peppercorns, (to poach)

  • 200g / 7oz tapioca, soaked for 15mins in 250ml cold water

  • 200g / 7oz boiled potatoes, (a dry variety), drained well and crushed coarsely

  • 1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

  • ½ tsp ground cumin

  • Small bunch coriander leaves, roughly chopped

  • 1 tsp black onion seeds

  • Salt

  • To make the dip:

  • 100ml/ 3 ½ fl oz of plain yoghurt

  • 3” piece of cucumber, deseeded and diced small

  • 2 – 3 mint leaves, chopped

  • Salt to taste


  • 1.

    In a pan boil the potatoes in water.

  • 2.

    In another pan poach the monkfish in a mix of ¾ water and ¼ white wine with some parsley stalks and a couple of white peppercorns. Cover the pan with cling film and bring to a gentle simmer. As the clingfilm starts to bubbles up remove from the heat but keep covered and allow to cool completely.

  • 3.

    Meanwhile, crush the potatoes to a course texture. When the monkfish is cool, shred finely. Mix all ingredients together then season to taste. Roll the mixture into walnut sized balls.

  • 4.

    Heat vegetable oil in a pan until hot enough to fry the balls to a golden colour (a large pan would be better than a basket fryer – oil should be deep enough to cover the balls when gently lowered in). Meanwhile make the dip by mixing together the above ingredients.

  • 5.

    Once the balls are golden remove them from the oil using a slotted spoon and drain well on paper then sprinkle with a little salt to keep crispy. Serve with lime wedges and dip.

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