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Turkish fish cakes with preserved lemon yogurt

Turkish fish cakes with preserved lemon yogurt

Terrific starter from Diana Henry. You don’t have to stick to the yogurt on the side – you can offer a lemon or herb mayonnaise instead, and serve with finely sliced onions, sumac and parsley.

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High protein
  • Serves4
  • CourseStarter
  • Prepare15 mins
  • Cook15 mins
  • Total time30 mins
  • Pluscooling

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  • 500g fillets firm white fish, such as haddock or cod, skin removed
  • 60g stale white bread, torn into large chunks
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • ½ x 25g pack flat leaf parsley, leaves finely chopped
  • ½ x 25g pack dill, leaves chopped
  • 1 small unwaxed lemon, zest and 2 tbsp juice
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 British Blacktail Free Range Medium Egg, beaten
  • 1 tbsp Essential Olive Oil
  • 6 tbsp plain flour, seasoned
  • 6 tbsp olive oil or groundnut oil, for frying

For the yogurt

  • 1 preserved lemon, plus 1 tbsp pickling juice from the jar
  • 1 clove garlic, finely grated to a purée
  • 100g strained Greek yogurt


  1. Fill a sauté pan with boiling water halfway up the sides. Bring to a simmer and add salt. Slide the fish into the water and cook gently for 10 minutes, then lift out using a slotted spoon. Put into a bowl and leave to cool. Flake the fish flesh.

  2. Soak the bread for 2 minutes in enough warm water to just cover, then drain and squeeze out excess moisture. Crumble, then add to the fish with the onion, herbs, lemon zest and juice and cinnamon. Season. Mix everything together with your hands, then add the egg and olive oil. Mix again and taste for seasoning.

  3. Set out a large flat bowl – a pasta bowl is good – and put the seasoned flour in. Using wet hands, form the fish mixture into 12 small patties, setting them on a tray.

  4. Spread some double thickness kitchen paper on the counter or a large plate – this is where you will put your cooked patties. Coat the patties with the flour, turning each over, and put them on a plate. Heat 1-2 tbsp olive or groundnut oil in a nonstick frying pan, then cook the patties in batches over a medium-high heat for about 2 minutes 30 seconds on each side, adding more oil as needed. They should be golden brown on the outside and piping hot and soft inside. As each batch is ready, put them onto the kitchen paper.

  5. Finely chop the preserved lemon, removing any seeds. Stir the flesh, pickling juice and garlic into the yogurt. Serve the patties with the lemon-garlic yogurt and a salad of finely sliced red onions tossed with sumac, parsley, lemon juice, seasoning and extra virgin olive oil, and a bowl of pickled chillies too, if liked.


Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe


1,711kJ/ 408kcals



Saturated Fat












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