Makes: 4 to 6 servings (approx. 10 entrée-sized cakes) OR 15 to 16 hors d’oeuvre
1 lb. Walleye fillets (Jumbo Lump Crabmeat or Salmon are also excellent)
¼ cup real mayonnaise (if using a fresh Basic Aioli, omit the garlic powder below)
2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
3 dashes Tabasco
4 dashes Worcestershire Sauce
1 whole egg
1/3 cup diced red pepper
1/3 cup diced red onion
Juice of half a lemon
1 teaspoon granulated garlic or ½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
½ to 1 cup Japanese style breadcrumbs (Panko)
Vegetable oil for frying
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and bake the walleye (whole fillets) in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes. Cool in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before using. When cool, use your hands to break the walleye up into small pieces about ½-inch in size, or use a knife to rough chop.
Use a whisk to mix all ingredients together except the walleye and breadcrumbs. Add the walleye and a half cup of breadcrumbs. Use a rubber spatula to lightly toss all ingredients until well combined.
Test the mixture by squeezing some in your hand: if it crumbles, the mixture is too dry; add more mayonnaise/aioli, one teaspoon at a time. If liquid leaks out, it is too moist, so add more breadcrumbs. The mixture is ready when it can hold the form of a cake.
Form the mixture into desired-sized cakes. Heat ¾ cup of oil in a 10-inch pan over medium-high heat. Test for readiness by tossing in a few breadcrumbs. If they sizzle, the oil is ready.
Place the walleye cakes in the pan, being careful to leave a little space between each cake. Sauté on each side until golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes each side. Serve immediately with Tuscan Bean Salad and Roasted Red Pepper Aioli.
Tony’s Tip: The cakes can be made and formed in advance, and refrigerated for up to 3-4 days before cooking. If preparing many cakes at once, keep them warm in a 200 degree oven after frying, until ready to serve.