LMAO at Falling Standards and 35 mm Fish Cakes

Fish cakes (10 of 11)I look at lots of blogs where the photography is taken using either iPhone or Android. There is no difference, I hear, between a well, considered, correctly composed, nicely lit photo and something “…that the phone can do.” This depresses me. It depresses me on two fronts. Firstly, I have spent a few years now, working hard, in my spare time, to improve my photography skills. It would appear that I have been wasting my time. The phone can do it. Secondly, I have been using my blog as an outlet for my creative side. This is supposed to help keep me calm and to allow me be nice to everybody. I’m failing on that front too. While I’m at it, there is a third niggle and I must get it out there. 

This may not seem like any ‘biggie’ to you. But, I see the English language disappearing, like a well made fish cake in front of a hungry child. Soon there will be nothing left but a bunch of emojis and abbreviations that will only be understood by the well fed youngster. We can all go “LOLs” at the demise of the once beautiful language. But IMHO, this is not progress.

Side note on the acronyms. For those of you who DSTNFA (Don’t see the need for acronyms), there is a table at the end of the post. I’ll bet you’re over 40! LOLs.

Now, FWIW, here’s my ingredients list for Fishcakes:


  • 250 grammes smoked haddock*
  • 250 grammes fresh cod
  • 250 grammes salmon**
  • 20 grammes breadcrumbs
  • 20 grammes Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 red chilli
  • A sprinkling of dried seaweed
  • Salt and pepper

*  For some reason, in Ireland, haddock seems to be the only white fish that is available smoked. Any smoked cod is inevitably painted with ‘liquid smoke’. WTF (white tainted fish).

** I like to use the tail end for this dish because it has more flavour. That’s because the salmon works its tail more than any other bit of it. I used to know a couple of girls like that. However, it is not politically correct to even say that. So I won’t.

Skin the fish using a flexible filleting knife, if you have one.

Fish cakes (1 of 11)

A flexible fish filleting knife is a worthwhile investment IMHO.

Slice the fish into small pieces, about the size of a small piece of fish (That’s as useful as an acronym to one who doesn’t know what it means).

Fish cakes (2 of 11)

A picture paints a thousand words. Imagine how many acronyms this paints!

Put the fish pieces into a bowl and add all the remaining ingredients except the Panko and one of the eggs. Judge the salt and pepper for yourself.

Fish cakes (3 of 11)

That’s everything that needs to go in there AFAIK.

Then give it a good stir to incorporate.

Side note on the seaweed and fish: I appreciate that not everybody will have a ready supply of dried seaweed to hand. If you don’t use it, give an extra twist of salt and pepper. On the fish end of things, use fresh fish. Fish cakes are often made using older fish (it makes good commercial sense). We are not trying to make commercial sense here. We are making fishcakes. 

Mould the mixture into small fishcakes. I made 12 with my mixture. Let them rest on some greaseproof paper.

Fish cakes (5 of 11)

I made twelve with my mixture, ADFFCIYLPA.

Pop them in the fridge for 20 minutes. This will help them retain their shape. Beat the remaining egg on a large plate. Spread the Panko on another plate. Heat a frying pan to medium high. Add some oil. When it is hot, dip the fishcakes into the egg, then into the Panko, then back in the egg then back in the Panko. Place them on the frying pan. Fry until golden brown.

Fish cakes (7 of 11)

That’s spilled Panko in the top right of the photo. This is messy work.

Turn and brown them on the other side.

Fish cakes (8 of 11)

They really are as crunchy as they look in this picture.

Drain them on newspaper or on kitchen paper if you are of the Internet generation and don’t read papers any more. Serve them with a salad and a nice glass of white wine or a glass of nice white wine, if you want to be pedantic about it. Many of the acronym wielding lot won’t know the difference. ROTFLMAO.

Fish cakes (9 of 11)

We had a few baby potatoes with this too. I had a third one L8R.

So, why did I call them the 35mm fishcakes? Truth is I normally shoot with a fixed 50mm lens. I like it and the results it helps me achieve. Today I thought I should experiment with the 35mm. The results are pretty good, AFICS. Though, I’ll bet you think you could do better with a Samsung Galaxy, FFS!

Abbreviation Station
LOLLaugh out loud
FWIWFor what it’s worth
IMHOIn my humble opinion
AFAIKAs far as I know
ADFFCIYLPAA dozen fresh fishcakes if you like pointless acronyms
ROTFLMAORolling on the floor laughing my ass off
AFICSAs far as I can see
FFSWork it out for yourself
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Latest comments
  • Great post Conor. Another one to add, PSML. Fish cakes look well tasty.

    • Lisa, you are a shocker. I was trying to maintain a high standard and you go and make me burst out laughing.

  • The fish cakes look delicious. I have a teen daughter and yes, all the abbreviations can get a little frustrating.

    • If you want to irritate the teenage daughter, add dot com to the end of sentences. Things like “It’s time for your dinner dot com.” or “Can you clean the bathroom dot com?” will guarantee to have her call you “so last year” or likewise. It’s worth it.

  • I can assure you that a decent camera will still give you better results than a phone. You will also have more control of the photograph using a real camera. Automatic does not always produce the desired results.
    Those look like first class fishcakes 🙂

    • Thanks MD. Glad to have you on my side. When I see the standard of some of the food photos published in blogs, I weep.

  • These fishcakes with their three swimming proteins are like an equivalent to the beef, veal and pork mixture one oft uses for meatballs! One plus one plus one equals about five!! Simple but delightful recipe which shall be tried! Methinks one of the reasons I turned my back on Facebook some six years ago was the deterioration of English perceived . . . not that I do not use ‘Ehaspeak’ but at least the ‘LOL’s have become very rare!

    • Ehaspeak is not only acceptable and encouraged, it is your own personal style. That is the progressive evolution of the language. LAMO etc. are retrograde and won’t stand the test of time. Certainly not aw well as you and I have done.
      Stay well,

  • SMH… (DFCT!)

    • I got the head shaking bit but “Tenado, Burkina Faso in Airport Codes” or “Designed for Current Testability” has me stumped. Back to you Adam!

  • As someone who tries to avoid this passion for abbreviations, I’m fully on your side on this, and also on the issue of phone vs camera. I would never consider posting something illustrated with a phone camera image unless that was absolutely all I could get. A good camera achieves a richer, deeper image with much more potential for successful editing outcomes.

    • Perfectly put Kate. Though, I suspect your use of the words “successful outcomes” is more related to matters in your own life. I am thinking of you.

  • ROTFLMAO! What a lot of lols you’ve managed to pack into one post. Aagh. I am sometimes guilty of using these abbreviations myself although I agree they’re intensely irritating, especially when someone writes EVERYTHING IN CAPITAL LETTERS and in lolcat (you know who you are but I doubt you’re reading this). FFS, stop shouting and speak English, dammit.
    On a calmer note, the fishcakes look fab and I like the idea of using seaweed. And please don’t stop taking your beautifully composed and shot pictures with a proper camera. Will the real Conor Bofin please stand up and take a bow?

    • Too kind Linda, too kind. I was tempted to reply all in capitals but I resisted. The seaweed worked really well. I have lots more for further experimenting.

  • Nice use of fresh fish! There’s really no other option if you want to make edible fish or crab cakes (IMO)…

    • Your opinion counts around here and I completely agree on the freshness.

  • Love the use of different fish here, and the seaweed. Looks very tasty! 🙂

    • My daughter got me the seaweed a few months ago. It works really well with any fish. I will post more of it over the coming weeks.

  • Gorgeous recipe; gorgeous photo; and PMSL entertaining post (I’m well over 40 but it didn’t faze me once, I’m pleased to say 🙂 ) Given the beauty of the fishcakes I might put a little more effort into the salad though. Not sure what just yet but it would include something citrusy to cut the salmon and mayo.

    • If I read this wearing my cloak of negativity, I focus (pun intended) on my poor salad preparation. However, I never wear such dark garb and I thank you for your kind words and hope that you were in the right place when the L broke out.

      • It wasn’t meant to be a criticism: my bad! It’s just that I’m such a pig that a couple of fishcakes and a simple salad is more of a light snack than a meal so I’d want the salad to be more substantial – which creates the opportunity for complexity. OTOH, throw in some grapefruit segments and an avocado and I’d be happy 🙂

        • LOLS as they say. The grapefruit sounds like an inspired thought.

  • I don’t believe that a phone or ipad photo can compare to a photo taken by a camera with a good lens.

    • Thanks Rosemary. Your opinion is valued as I love your photos.

  • Tasty fish cakes and a classic Conoresque post! TBH, wouldn’t’ve noticed the different lense if you hadn’t pointed it out. When I read 35mm, I figured you were going to follow Stéphane’s return to analog photography.

    • I could just as easily gone all Stephanesque and made the fishcakes exactly 35mm thick. The thought of 35mm film photography fills me with dread. Though, eldest daughter’s other half is an expert and is building a large frame film camera himself. He does great works.

  • Oh I think there is a difference between a phone and a camera. Though TBH (see I’m over 40 and can keep up!) the phones have greatly improved. But for lower light and action, they don’t compare. I use both as a tool. Lovely fish cakes. 🙂

    • I actually think it’s only the over 40s who use the abbreviations so we can look cool. Our children throw their eyes to heaven when we do.

  • He he, my wise beyond her years 17-year-old daughter told me nobody uses LOL anymore, that it dates you. She said you have to use he he now. See how I did that? Lovely fish cakes, Conor.

  • I love the recipe for the fish cakes. You keep it clean and simple, what I like! And this blog post is really funny and I am with you on most counts. But I kind of have to confess that I use my IPhone for the pictures, too. Don`t tell anybody because everybody loves the pictures 🙂

    • You should not have admitted it. Now I will tut tut every time I look at your lovely blog.
      Best as ever,

      • Or maybe you see the pictures, like them and decide for yourself that you use the phone once in a while, too 😉 It does not hurt! Thanks, Claudia

        • I’ve tried that. My phone photos are dire. I’ll leave it to the experts!

  • Will never trade my camera picture to my iPhone pictures, mainly for food picture taking.
    Love your recipe and all your pictures.

  • I am a long way past 40, use a DSLR and write in long hand. I guess I’m your target audience. Lovely fishcakes…

    • As the saying goes “the only time I’ll see 40 again is on a front door”. Half decent shots require a half decent camera I’m my opinion, as you might have guessed. Yours always have that quality link Sandra. There is more to it than the camera too, as you well know.

  • I love cooking with seaweed and this is a perfect use for it…must try! They look scrumptious alright and your photos are always brilliant–don’t change a thing. 🙂

    *Very nice fishcakes indeed…something that we eat regularly, but normally with only cod and salmon as I’m too mean to put smoked haddock in them as well. Panko is as available as hens’ teeth here so I make my own.

  • Hi Conor!
    These fishcakes look phenomenal! My mama (turned 75 yesterday) used to make fishcakes with canned tuna and they were always so good. I love your use of fresh fish. I’m definitely going to try these.
    There are so many things dying out that were beautiful and artistic and took talent. Great post!

    • Thanks Debbie. You are, as ever too kind IMHO.

  • Brilliant post Conor! Fish cakes with actual fish and not just mashed potato and some tinned salmon.
    I hate to admit I am one of the Samsung users. My photography skills are nowhere near good enough with my DSLR. I don’t think for one minute though that my pics are as good as they could or should be.
    ADFFCIYLPA – thanks for explaining this one, it was a bit of a head scratcher. I hate text speak. And I’m still in my mid thirties. Clinging to my mid thirties!

    • Stay in your mid thirties until you pass 50. I’m well past it and act younger every year. Act, not look, unfortunately.

  • As far as capitalized acronyms/abbreviations are concerned, they are old hat.
    Long before computers, laptops, notepads, or smart phones they were use in lots of ways.
    I am in my late 60s and have an autograph book (remember them?!) from my girlhood in which school friends and family and the occasional minor local celebrity wrote something. One of the most common things written in such books – including mine – was:
    2 YS U R, 2YS U B, I C U R 2YS 4 Me! And back in the day lots of people used to say TTFN or OTT – so there is nothing new under the sun.

    On to the fishcakes, they sound scrumptious. Our family are great fishcake lovers, but I make mine very differently. If using salmon, cod or smoked haddock, I always poach the fish in a little milk, then mash it up. Instead of fresh breadcrumbs I usually use some cold mashed potato – not too much, and sometimes chopped spring onions, or parsley or chopped capers. Other than that the same as yours. I had never considered making them with ‘raw’ fish but will do so now.
    BTW when not in China we live in a fishing village in Scotland (Fife) and a local fisherman once told me that if any fish fillet has skin on one side, it is there to hold the fish flesh together once it is not super fresh. Needless to say ,in Pittenweem there is never any skin on a fillet of smoked haddie!

    • Excellent comment indeed. I remember as an 11 year old being confused by a note from a girl, signed SWALK. When I found out what it meant, my young ears reddened.
      I envy you the skinless haddock.

  • OK, I just came upon your blog. I liked each one of your posts and I am so hungry now I need to hit the kitchen and make something. Will so enjoy following you.

    • Thanks indeed. Delighted to have you here. Please comment and join our conversation.

  • Hahahaaaaaa. Ah, acronyms. I work in a hospital and the amount of acronyms we use does my head in, so I do try and avoid them in my personal life. These look like ridiculously classy fish cakes. Way better than the canned tuna or salmon (with mashed potato) versions I’ve eaten before. I must give your recipe a go!

    • I read a couple of comments about canned tuna fish cakes. I don’t think I’m being too boastful when I say these are in a different league. Fresh always wins out, IMVHO (V for Very).

      • I won’t argue with that Conor! I think in this case, your VHO is fact!

  • White tainted fish, LMAO. I think a phone camera is only acceptable if you have bright natural light. It’s fine for Facebook, but the images don’t hold up to the closer scrutiny of large blog photos, especially on a big screen. I wonder if phone photos are used by some people because they only view them on a phone?

    Those are some fine looking fish cakes. I’ve got a whole dried Icelandic cod waiting in the fridge, the sort it takes heavy weaponry to break into. Poached, that might be a nice substitute for the totally unavailable smoked fish (nothing around here but WTF).

    Thanks for the lovely looking recipe and a good giggle.


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