I created this recipe from an open tin of tuna left over in the fridge. I used chickpeas in this particular recipe to keep the carbohydrates fairly low and because I had some left over in the fridge, however, I have made these cakes with mashed sweet potato in the past and this works quite well too. Substitute the chickpeas for 1 medium sweet potato that has been peeled, boiled and mashed.
These tuna cakes are very easy to make and provide a healthy meal when served with a salad. Plus these cakes are cheap with the total cost for these 6 cakes coming in at approximately $4.20 in total*. The tuna provides protein and long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). So why are long-chain omega-3 PUFAs so important? Well, they are structural and functional components of cell membranes, the long-chain omega-3 PUFAs eicosapentaenoic acid (EP) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) have vascular-protective effects and are known to affect lipid profile, vascular tone and blood coagulation and they have anti-inflammatory effects, which may be beneficial in inflammatory disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis. Omega-3 fatty acids also play a key role in the functioning of the brain and central nervous system. Along with omega-6 fatty acids, they are involved in the development and maturation of neuronal structures and are essential throughout life for maintaining normal brain and nervous system function (1). I will stop there but I plan to go further into the research in future blog posts.
So enjoy these healthy Thai tuna cakes. I served them with a seaweed salad (recipe to come) and a simple sauce made by combining Greek yoghurt, dried coriander, lime juice, dried chilli and salt.
Makes 6 cakes
1 cup chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 clove garlic
¾ of a 425gram tin of tuna in springwater, well drained (remove as much moisture as possible)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon dried chilli
Optional: pinch or two of fresh chopped basil or coriander
- Add the chickpeas and garlic to a food processor and process until chickpeas start to form a smooth paste.
- Add the processed chickpeas and garlic to a large mixing bowl.
- Add the tuna, soy sauce, lime juice, ginger and chilli mix well.
- Mix in the egg.
- Shape into 6 patties using a dessert spoon onto a baking tray lined with baking paper. Bake at 180°C for 30 minutes. Gently flip the cakes with a spatula and bake for a further 10 minutes.
*Total cost based on groceries purchased at Aldi.
1. Schuchardt, J. P. Huss, M., Stauss-Grabo, M. and Hahn, A. (2010). Significance of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) for the development and behaviour of children. European Journal of Pediatrics. 169: 149-164.