Fish Cutlets – Something absolutely sinful, spicy and delicious.

Crisp on the outside, spicy and juicy inside, these Indian style fish cutlets are a snap to make. These salmon croquettes make for a great evening snack or party appetizers.

And when rains hit or it’s freezing cold I crave something absolutely sinful, spicy, and delicious. Is there any better way to spend a lazy evening with your loved ones?

Indian cutlets are a kind of croquettes made with a variety of fillings, coated with breadcrumbs, and fried till crispy and golden. The fillings can be made with potatoes, beets and other vegetables, and of course, any kind of meat.

This time, I used salmon. It had been a while since I made fish cutlets and the idea seemed just perfect for my cravings. Indian style fish cutlets are best made spicy, slightly tangy, and enjoyed right away when hot.

Since fish gets cooked fast, fish cutlets are the easiest to make. I prefer to chop my fish into small pieces and cook it with onions, chilies, and spices. Once they get cooked, gently break them or flake them apart with a spoon. Add a couple of mashed potatoes to add bulk to the mixture and help it to bind together. Shape, roll, and fry up! That’s all there is to it.

I served these salmon croquettes with lemonade because the rains were not that effective in bringing the temps down all of a sudden. Tea and coffee are traditional favorites, but if you are making the cutlets spicy, there’s nothing like a cool glass of lemonade to wash it all down

Crisp on the outside, spicy and juicy inside, these Indian style fish cutlets are a snap to make. These salmon croquettes make for a great evening snack or party appetizer.


For the filling,

  • Potato – 2, medium-sized
  • Oil – 2 tbsp
  • Cumin seeds – ½ tsp
  • Curry leaves – 3-4, chopped
  • Onion – 1, finely chopped
  • Ginger and garlic paste – 2 tsp
  • Green chili – 1, finely chopped (optional, omit if serving to kids)
  • Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
  • Red chili powder – 1 tsp (or as per taste)
  • Garam masala powder – ½ tsp
  • Salmon filet – ½ lb, skinless and cut into small pieces
  • Salt – to taste
  • Black pepper powder – ¼ tsp
  • Amchur powder – ½ tsp (or juice of half a lime)
  • Cilantro leaves – 2 tbsp, finely chopped

For the cutlets,

  • Fish and potato filling – above quantity, cooled slightly
  • Egg – 1, large
  • Breadcrumbs – 1 cup
  • Salt and pepper – for seasoning
  • Oil – for frying


  1. Fish Cutlet Filling: Boil, peel, and mash the potatoes. Set aside.
  2. In a large pan or deep skillet, heat the oil. Add cumin seeds and curry leaves and allow them to crackle.
  3. Add onions and saute for a few minutes till soft and lightly golden in color. Add the ginger-garlic paste and chopped green chili and saute well till the raw smell is gone.
  4. Now add the turmeric powder, red chili powder, and garam masala powder and saute for a few seconds.
  5. Add the fish pieces and salt to taste. Cook the fish on all sides. When the fish is opaque (cooked), break it down or mash lightly with the spoon. You want a fairly smooth mixture.
  6. Add the mashed potatoes and stir to combine well with the masala and fish. Cook together till the mixture is fairly dry.
  7. Sprinkle black pepper powder, aamchur powder, and cilantro leaves, mix well and remove from heat. Let filling cool completely before forming the cutlets.
  8. Making Fish Cutlets: Set up your breading station. Whisk the egg, season lightly with salt and pepper in a shallow bowl. Take breadcrumbs in another bowl.
  9. Pinch lime-sized balls of the fish filling, smoothen with your hands and flatten it slightly to a disk shape. Alternately, you can make oval or cylindrical shapes as well.
  10. Dip each patty in the egg, then roll generously in breadcrumbs. Transfer to a large tray or plate. Repeat till all the filling is used up.
  11. At this point, you can either freeze the patties for future use or fry them right away. Allow the coating to firm up slightly before frying them. You can refrigerate them for 10-15 minutes to speed up things.
  12. Heat oil in a frying pan. When the oil is hot, drop in a couple of patties, reduce heat to medium-high and fry till golden brown on all sides. Remove to a paper towel lined plate to drain excess oil. Increase the heat again before frying the next batch. Repeat till all cutlets/croquettes are done.
  13. Serve them hot along with some ketchup. Serve with tea, coffee or a cool glass of lemonade depending on your mood!
  14. Fish cutlets can also be served along with a main meal or as appetizers. It goes well with almost all kinds of rice dishes, flatbreads and can also be eaten as a slider sandwiched between lightly toasted buns.

NOTES:1. You can use other fish like tuna, mahi-mahi, kingfish, etc. The fish can be cooked separately, but I like to cook it in the masala to absorb maximum flavor. Cutting the fish into small pieces will make them cook really fast.
2. You can shallow fry the cutlets in a pan or even bake them for a healthier version (at 400 deg.F for 15 minutes or till the coating is browned).
3. The oil must neither be too hot or not hot enough. If it is too hot, the cutlets will burn and if it is not hot enough, it has a tendency to absorb oil and turn soggy. Start with a hot pan of oil, then reduce the heat to medium and fry cutlets till evenly browned on both sides. Bring oil temperature up before dropping in the next batch of patties.
4. Formed patties can be frozen for a few weeks. Flash-freeze the patties on a tray or baking sheet. Then place them in Ziploc bags or airtight freezer containers and store in the freezer till needed. To make cutlets, remove as many patties as required, thaw them slightly and fry/bake as usual.
Enjoy piping hot, spicy fish cutlets as a quick snack or serve them up at a party. These are excellent for your upcoming parties this weekend or anytime around the year. I hope you have a great time!

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