Fried fish cakes (cha ca quy nhon)

Typically, when I first make a recipe, I do it exactly the way it says to.  This one?  I’m not too sure.  It sounds very tedious, pounding the fish into a paste but overall this sounds like a good recipe (plus, something different).  This time, I will include the note provided by the person who sent me this recipe:

(Simon’s note:  A richly flavored fish is really the best choice for these; a very lean white fish will probably disappoint.  Generations of thrift leads lots of folks to use those thin sections near the tail-end, to salvage the flesh in fish collars and cheeks, and that’s what often gets processed for fish pastes and cakes.  A food processor could be used, but a first-timer wouldn’t get the texture right without first standing over the shoulder of someone who does this all the time.)

http://www.sbs.com.au/food/recipes/fried-fish-cakes-cha-ca-quy-nhon


Ingredients
    500 g skinless Spanish mackerel fillets, cut into cubes
    1 tbsp fish sauce
    ½ tsp salt
    ½ tsp freshly ground pepper
    ¼ tsp sesame oil
    1 garlic clove, finely diced
    5 spring onions, white part only, finely sliced
    vegetable oil, for deep frying
    nuoc mam cham (dipping fish sauce), to serve

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