Tasty tuna patties make a moreish midweek meal, especially when you dress them up with a pickled cucumber and radish salad.
600ml cold water
300ml rice wine vinegar
80g caster sugar or coconut sugar or 1/4 cup maple syrup
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1-2 star anise
10g spiral arame, rehydrated (available from Asian grocery stores)
2 large sweet potatoes with skin, cut into chunks
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Sea-salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper, to season
300g tinned tuna, drained of any juices
2 handfuls of breadcrumbs, plus extra 2 handfuls
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 green shallots, finely sliced
5cm piece ginger, peeled and grated
11/2 Tbsp sesame seeds, lightly toasted
Oil, for shallow frying
3 lebanese cucumbers, sliced into thin rounds
8 radishes, thinly sliced
Coriander leaves, lemon wedges to serve
Preheat oven to 180°C fan-forced (200°C conventional). Put water, vinegar, sugar, salt, mustard seeds and star anise, in a small saucepan and set over high heat. Bring to a gentle boil, then turn heat down and simmer for a few minutes. Remove from heat and pour over arame in a small heatproof bowl. Allow to cool.
Meanwhile, toss sweet potato in oil, season and spread on an oven tray. Roast for 30-40 minutes or until tender. Transfer sweet potato to a large bowl and roughly mash. Add tuna, breadcrumbs, eggs, green shallots, ginger, and half the sesame seeds, then season. Mix well.
Put remaining sesame seeds and extra breadcrumbs in a shallow bowl. Roll 8 patties with your hands and flatten them a little. Coat both sides of the patties in sesame crumbs.
Pour oil into a large frying pan until it comes 1cm up the side. Set over medium heat. When oil is hot, cook patties in 2 batches. Cook for about 3 minutes on one side then, using a slide, gently turn patties over and cook for a further 3 minutes. Drain.
Toss cucumber and radish in the bowl with arame and pickling liquid. Drain liquid and pile pickled salad on top of tuna patties. Serve patties scattered with coriander leaves and with a squeeze of lemon from wedges.
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