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Citrus Fish Cakes with Roasted Fennel and Orange Salad


Citrus Fish Cakes with Roasted Fennel and Orange Salad

These fresh, flavorful citrus fish cakes are easy to make, yet elegant enough to serve for brunch. The bright salad makes it a meal!

Citrus Fish Cakes with Roasted Fennel and Orange Salad //

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White Fish, Green Olive, and Citrus Patties with Fennel and Orange Salad //

Citrus Fish Cakes with Roasted Fennel and Orange Salad

These fresh, flavorful citrus fish cakes are easy to make, yet elegant enough to serve for brunch. The bright salad makes it a meal!
Prep Time:25 mins
Cook Time:15 mins
Total Time:40 mins
Servings 2 servings
Author Marie Asselin,


For the roasted fennel and orange salad

  • 1 fennel bulb fronds removed and saved for the citrus fish cakes, cored, bulb sliced
  • 2 ½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 large handfuls arugula leaves
  • 2 oranges peeled and sliced (see note)
  • 2 tbsp toasted almonds, walnuts, or hazelnuts, chopped
  • 1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Pinch fleur de sel or flaky sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the citrus fish cakes

  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 12 oz cooked white fish fillets (such as tilapia), crumbled
  • cup whole-wheat breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup finely chopped green olives
  • ¼ cup chopped fennel fronds, basil, and mint, tightly packed
  • 2 green onions, finely chopped
  • Finely grated zest from half an orange
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

For the easy citrus mayonnaise

  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • Finely grated zest from ½ orange and ½ lemon
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice


For the roasted fennel and orange salad

  • Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C). Spread the sliced fennel over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with 1/2 tbsp (8 ml) of the extra-virgin olive oil, then sprinkle with a pinch of salt and some freshly ground black pepper. Roast for 8 minutes until the fennel is crisp-tender and lightly browned. Let cool completely.

For the citrus fish cakes

  • Using a mortar or a rolling pin, crush the fennel seeds. Add to a large mixing bowl, then add the crumbled cooked fish. Add the breadcrumbs, green olives, chopped herbs, green onion, orange zest, egg, lemon juice, and crushed red pepper. Mix to carefully combine the ingredients. Shape the mixture into four 3-inch (8 cm). Be careful when handling the patties because they are delicate and can break easily.
  • In a large nonstick skillet set over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil. Carefully transfer the patties to the skillet and cook for 2 minutes per side, until golden and crisp. Keep warm in a low oven.

For the easy citrus mayonnaise

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, orange zest, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Transfer to an airtight jar and refrigerate until service.

To assemble the salad

  • Transfer the cooled, roasted fennel to a bowl. Add the arugula, orange, and nuts. Gently toss. Drizzle with the remaining 2 tbsp (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil and lemon juice, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss again to combine.
  • SERVING: Serve the warm citrus fish cakes with the roasted fennel and orange salad and citrus mayo on the side.
  • STORAGE: You can prepare and cook the citrus fish patties up to 2 days ahead of time and refrigerate in an airtight container. Reheat in a 300°F (150°C) oven for 8 minutes and serve with the salad.
  • MAKE IT GLUTEN-FREE: Use gluten-free breadcrumbs.


Peeling and chopping the oranges is the fastest way to prepare this salad, but to give it a luxurious look, you can segment the oranges instead.
How to segment oranges: First, peel the fruit with a very sharp pairing knife: cut off both the top and bottom of the orange. Stand the orange on either of the flat ends. Run the knife along the fruit from top to bottom, removing the skin and pith, leaving the flesh bare. Rotate the orange and repeat.
To collect segments, take the peeled orange in one hand, and run the knife alongside the membranes, leaving entirely bare pieces of orange behind. You should make sure to do this over a bowl and squeeze the remaining membrane to catch all dripping juices. You can use the juice in this recipe, or save it for your next smoothie or cocktail.

Did you make this?

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Prep Time: 25 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 40 mins


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