Ina Garten’s ‘Luxurious’ yet Easy-to-Make Fish and Lobster Cakes

TL; DR: 

  • Ina Garten combines cod and lobster to make Fish and Lobster Cakes. 
  • She gets lobster meat, already cooked, from her local seafood shop.
  • Garten serves them with a mayonnaise-based sauce she makes in a food processor.

Ina Garten’s Fish and Lobster Cakes are a Barefoot Contessa twist on classic crab cakes. The Food Network star mixes lobster meat with cod, spices, and bread crumbs for a variation on the traditional seafood dish. 

Ina Garten’s Fish and Lobster Cakes are ‘much less expected’ than crab cakes 

Similar to many of her other Barefoot Contessa recipes, such as pineapple carrot cake or lobster BLTs, Garten’s Fish and Lobster Cakes are slightly different than the original. 

“Crab cakes are delicious, but these fish cakes with a mixture of cod and lobster are much less expected,” Garten wrote in her 2016 Barefoot Contessa cookbook, Cooking for Jeffrey. “The creamy cod — with dill, lemon, and mustard — combined with chunks of sweet lobster meat, is wonderful.”

Garten doesn’t stop there. She serves them with a rémoulade sauce made with mustard and her preferred brand of “good” mayonnaise.

The Barefoot Contessa cooks cod at home before mixing it with pre-cooked lobster meat

Garten doesn’t make her Fish and Lobster Cakes without a store-bought shortcut. As she noted in her book and on her TV show, she asks the seafood shop to cook the lobster. “Have the seafood shop cook it. It’s so much easier,” she said. 

As for the cod, Garten prepares it herself. She sautees celery and red pepper in a pan with butter. Once they’re soft, she pours in heavy cream. Then she puts boneless, skinless cod fillets on top and simmers everything for 10 minutes. 

When the fish is cooled, after about 10 minutes, the cod is ready to use in Garten’s Fish and Lobster Cakes. 

How to make Ina Garten’s Fish and Lobster Cakes

From there, Garten gets started on the mixture for the fish cakes. She puts the cod mixture into a big bowl with storebought bread crumbs of the panko variety. 

“The cod and the cream and the vegetables are all going to go into the panko,” she said, noting the sauce helps keep the fish cakes moist.

Then she adds “delicious things,” including fresh dill, mustard, lemon zest, an egg, and “luxurious” lobster meat. 

Garten then reaches for panko, which will be part of the coating, and spreads it out on a plate. Next, she uses an ice cream scoop to form balls before rolling each one in the bread crumbs. 

“I’m just going to dip it in the panko crumbs, turn it over, and then when I saute it, they get golden brown and crisp,” she said.  

Finally, Garten sautes them in a pan of olive oil and butter. 

The Food Network star serves them with a rémoulade sauce

What’s a rémoulade sauce? According to Garten, it’s “a delicious combination of mustard and mayonnaise and French pickles” that’s “so good with the fish cakes.” 

“It’s really easy and, happily, it’s all done in the food processor,” she added.

To make the sauce, Garten puts “good” mayonnaise in a food processor along with minced cornichons (French pickles), whole-grain mustard, Champagne vinegar, salt, and pepper. She pulses it all together until smooth and the sauce is done. 

Get Garten’s full recipe for Fish and Lobster Cakes on Food Network.

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