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Jun 17, 2009 08:47 AM

Tuna cake?

Has anyone made a crab cake out of canned tuna?

Just wonderin'?

Love any recipes or ideas.

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  1. I have not made a tuna cake (and loathe canned tuna, so it's not in the cards for me); HOWEVER, our local A&P sells a variety of tasty fish cakes: crab, lump crab, shrimp and lobster. They are about $1 each when on sale and great for a quick dinner or lunch with you-know-what-condiment. ;)

    Is your heart set on tuna? If not, here's a plethora of crab cake recipes. I've been eyeing the Ruth's Chris one:

    1. scuzzo, I have tried it-- it wasn't offensive, but it was awfully bland. The recipe I used was one for salmon patties, not crab cakes. The tuna was white water-packed tuna. Too mild to be exciting, used lots of lemon juice and tartar sauce to fix it. But tuna burgers recipes exist, so I'd start there looking for recipes for "tuna cake".

      1. I think the fancy term is "tuna croquettes", and when I was a kid, they were a fancy occasional substitute for salmon patties in our house (back in the days when canned salmon was super cheap and tuna was kinda fancy). Usually the binding was just egg and crumbs, no mayo, but I imagine you could do it a variety of ways. As with salmon patties, any complexity will come from the seasoning-- but they're really quite adaptable with different seasoning combinations! I imagine that recipes for tuna croquettes or salmon patties will get you in the ballpark of what you're envisioning.

        1. Tuna croquettes (and salmon as well) were staples in my household. I especially loved them with my father's Pakistani spice blend. They were spicy and packed a punch. My mother's version was a bit more bland but creamy.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JungMann

            Ooh, this reminds me that for a while I was on a kick of putting a healthy dose of spicy carrot or green mango pickle into them-- might have to make a batch some time soon!

          2. Any low carb or at least wheat free variations on making patties?

            16 Replies
            1. re: scuzzo

              Not wheat free but I have made these and they were not bad. If I remember correctly I used panko instead of bread crumbs.

              1. re: scuzzo

                For wheat-free, maybe puffed rice for the crumbs? I guess really the crumbs are just filler and help lighten it up so it's not a block of tuna and egg. I usually use quite minimal crumbs anyway, and I bet especially if you tried playing with at least partly mayo as a binder, you could keep it quite minimal.

                1. re: scuzzo

                  puffed rice is a great idea. i also brush my veggie patties (burgers) with olive oil or melted butter and roll in a mixture of potato flour or flakes, salt, pepper, and garlic / onion powders before pan frying. i could see that working well for fish cakes.

                    1. re: cimui

                      And I can't find it now, but I used to have a tuna cake recipe that called for mashed potatoes as the binder. I could be a bit bland, but really seasoning the potatoes helps.

                    2. re: scuzzo

                      scuzzo, also...what about fine cornmeal? masa? rice flour?

                      1. re: alkapal

                        I like the cornmeal idea too!!! Why didn't I think of that?

                        1. re: scuzzo

                          tuna pone! <for those missing the reference, it is to "corn pone" , one of my favorites, along with hoe-cake to eat with black eyed peas and potlikker.>

                      2. re: scuzzo

                        Use egg, mayo, and parmesan as binders; if you look at the best crab cakes, they use little to no crackers/breadcrumbs/etc.

                        Unlike fresh crab, I would have to season the canned tuna a lot; it doesn't have much flavour on its own.

                        1. re: Caralien

                          i agree, the tuna just doesn't make good patties because it's sort of blah. i've also had blah results with the mild boneless skinless pink salmon in the small cans from bumble bee.

                          1. re: alkapal

                            I used StarKist Tuna Creations, I don't remember which flavor but I think that helped make a tastier patty.

                            1. re: alkapal

                              But if you treat that salmon or tuna to an Indian interpretation with yogurt, peppers, ginger, cumin, chili, turmeric and cilantro, then you end up with quite the flavorful final product! Instead of tartare sauce, we would eat these with raita.

                              1. re: JungMann

                                you make canned tuna patties with yogurt, etc?

                                1. re: alkapal

                                  Oh, this reminds me of a way that my mother used to make them, usually on Passover, but occasionally at other times, too: take leftover potato or yams, mash them up well, and mix in eggs, a bit of yogurt, a sprinkle of matzo meal, sometimes a can of tuna, and seasonings (salt, dill) to make a somewhat stiff batter. (I don't have ratios-- it's very much by look and feel)
                                  Pour into muffin tins and bake until golden. I'd completely forgotten about these! I'm sure the matzo meal could be omitted to be wheat-free, but they're definitely not carb-free...

                                2. re: JungMann

                                  jungmann, are you familiar with a dish of a cubanelle-type pepper stuffed with tuna (or other fish) and potatoes, with chillies (and maybe some other indian spices) -- then maybe battered and deep fried?

                                  1. re: alkapal

                                    Alkapal, I do use canned tuna to make Indian croquettes, but you do have to press the water out of them first. As to your second question, I have had peppers stuffed with seasoned and flaked tuna, but it was a Mexican preparation and not a very successful one, I might add.