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Recipe for cod cakes with red pepper, tarragon and yogurt remoulade


Here in coastal New England, we pride ourselves on fierce regional loyalty: to baked beans, clam chowder and stuffies, Del's frozen lemonade, and the Red Sox, our perennially heartbreaking baseball team. We also love our cod, the local white fish spawned in the cold water of the North Atlantic.

Fishing boats bring cod to market all year long, which makes cod cakes a popular appetizer on restaurant menus. You can make them at home for a fraction of the price; serve minis for a dinner party appetizer, or larger ones for a light lunch or dinner entree. If cod is expensive or hard to find in your area, substitute salmon or crab meat. To make this really quick and easy, whip up a batch of the remoulade a day or two in advance.


Cod cakes with red pepper, tarragon and yogurt remoulade

From the pantry, you'll need: canola oil, onion, garlic, dry bread crumbs, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, capers, extra virgin olive oil, Old Bay Seasoning, Greek yogurt.

Inspired by a recipe for salmon cakes in Yankee Magazine's Best of New England Recipes, this recipe makes 18-20 appetizer-size mini cod cakes, or 9-10 larger ones.


For the cod cakes:
1 Tbsp canola oil
2 Tbsp diced onion
2 Tbsp diced celery
1 small clove garlic, minced
2 cups dry plain bread crumbs, divided
1 tsp minced fresh parsley
1 tsp minced fresh tarragon
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp kosher salt
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Dash of hot sauce (I use Tabasco)
1-1/2 lb cod, skin removed, roughly chopped
1/4 cup finely diced red bell pepper

Canola oil for frying

For the remoulade:
2 tsp chopped fresh tarragon
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp capers, chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3/8 cup Greek yogurt
1/2 tsp Old Bay Seasoning
1/2 large roasted red bell pepper (from a jar okay), minced


Preheat a small nonstick frying pan over medium heat. Add 1 teaspoon of oil, the chopped onion, celery and garlic, and sauté for 2-3 minutes, until the onions are translucent. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

To the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, add the cooled onion mixture, 1 cup of bread crumbs, herbs, mustard, salt, Worcestershire, Tabasco, cod, and bell pepper; pulse 5-6 times to chop the fish and incorporate the ingredients.

Form the mixture into 18-20 small patties, or 9-10 larger ones.

Place the remaining 1 cup of bread crumbs in a bowl, and gently turn each cod cake in the crumbs to coat. Set the patties on a wire rack and let dry 15-20 minutes.

While the cod cakes are drying, combine all of the remoulade ingredients in a bowl. Stir together to incorporate the ingredients, and refrigerate until ready to use.

In a large sauté pan, heat 1/4 inch of canola oil over medium-high heat. Carefully add cod cakes, not too close together and in batches if necessary, and fry until browned and crisp, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel.

Serve warm, with remoulade sauce.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More fantastic fish:
Cod with raisins, nuts and apples, from The Perfect Pantry
Panko and mustard crusted fish, from The Perfect Pantry
Steamed Dungeness crabs with Old Bay, from House of Annie
Salmon with tomato, onions and capers, from Simply Recipes

Traditional New England cod cakes, with a kicked-up yogurt remoulade sauce.

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


I wish I lived in Coastal New England!

I love cod and would love to try these. I guess you can always make thinks cheaper at home. Especially when it's locally abundant and always available fresh.

Oh I love these! Love them! I just came across my mom's recipe for Salmon Cakes - one of my favorite things she made when we were kids - but they weren't half as good as yours look! Amazing! Even without the remoulade sauce I'll bet they are so full of flavor, but that sauce! Oooh I'm craving this now!

These sound so wonderfully "New England"!

Oh, gosh...I miss New England! And it is time to head to New Orleans (remoulade is one of my favorite tastes from New Orleans)

These look delicious and are dairy and egg free for those that need it!

Our "cod" is a very different fish but is equally delicious. Happy cooking and eating,

Michelle in Wellington, New Zealand

I love the remoulade. Greek yogurt makes everything better:)

You bring back memories of "coddies" that my mother made for dinner when I was a kid. The cod was in a can, and they were round balls like big marbles that were deep fried. So many no-no's now!

I've never had cod cakes, but they do sound awfully New Englandy. These would make an excellent appetizer for entertaining guests.

I really like the idea of making minis for a dinner party appetizer. As for the remoulade - well, I'm quite certain I could eat it by the spoonful.

Pam, I love living here, even though I'm away from the water.

Curt, cod is abundant and inexpensive here, but use whatever white fish you have access to in your area.

Jamie, this is a real New England dish, with a lightened up remoulade (that isn't a New England sauce at all, but it works!). I'll bet the salmon cakes are grand, too.

Kathy, they really are. Cod is king around here.

Candy, somehow the combination of New England and Louisiana really makes sense in this dish.

Michelle, I didn't know there was cod in New Zealand. I wonder how different it is from our local fish.

Maria, I'm a somewhat recent convert to Greek yogurt. I love it in sauces.

Susan, I promise you will like these better!

Jeanette, you can make these with any white fish, or even with salmon, but try them with cod if you have easy access to it like we do.

Cookin' Canuck, the minis are great. I saw a package in a gourmet shop and I was appalled at the price. It's so affordable to make them yourself.

I love New England but I never developed a taste for fish, even growing up here. However your cod cakes almost make me want to eat them. BUT the remoulade is a must for dipping about anything! I am thinking fried shrimp!

I love the idea of cod cakes as a more cost effective alternative to crab cakes!

Lydia, you caught me with that tarragon remoulade! You cannot buy Old Bay Seasoning here in Estonia, but I made some myself when making (imitation, I know) crab cakes few months ago, so I can also use some of that.

Oh Lydia, these look and sound delicious. I can't wait to try them. Just bought some Hake Fillet's and may use them instead of cod. We're fresh out of ocean here in Colorado!

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