Life’s a Feast: Turmeric fish burgers


PREP TIME: 10 mins

COOK TIME: 35-40 mins

SERVES: 4-5 people

The recipe below is my DIY version of the Friday night takeaway. It’s quick to make, affordable (if you choose a well-priced fish), and the whole family will love it. When buying your fish, make sure you always ask your fishmonger when the fish came in, so you can ensure you are buying the freshest available.

I tend to not buy anything that has come in more than two days before (for sashimi and sushi I prefer same day). This was a hit in my family and I’m sure it will be for yours too.

Dick Watson, I hope you make this, and a huge congrats to you and all the firefighters who received the inaugural Mayoral Award at the Spirit of Wakatipu awards on Saturday. Enjoy!


200g self-raising flour

60g cornflour (plus extra for dusting)

1 tablespoon turmeric

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

1/2 teaspoon salt

300ml soda water (or use 300ml beer)

4-5 sole fillets(or any other well-priced fish)

4 fresh burger buns(I got mine from Arrowtown Bakery)

Tartare sauce

1/4 cup QP mayonnaise(Japanese mayo)

1/4 natural yoghurt

2 tablespoons chopped shallots

2 tablespoons chopped capers

2 tablespoon chopped cornichons(or just use gherkins)

1 tablespoon caper juice

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Pinch cayenne (optional)


2 good handfuls of baby spinach,roughly chopped

3 tablespoons freshly chopped dill

A good handful of feather peas

2 spring onions, sliced

3 tablespoons lemon juice


1.Pre-heat the oven to 180degC.

2.Mix together all the ingredients for the tartare sauce and season with a little salt. Set aside.

3.Combine all the ingredients of the salad, pour over the lemon and combine thoroughly.

4.Whisk together the flour, cornflour, turmeric, vinegar, salt and soda. Fill a pan with enough oil to cover the bottom and about Heat til medium hot, or until a piece of bread turns golden in about 20 seconds.

5.Cut the buns in half and pop them in the oven while you cook the fish.

6.Dust the fish with a little cornflour. Dip into the batter, gently shake off excess and lower into the oil. Cook for about 2 mins each side or until golden and crisp, then drain on kitchen paper.

7.Take the buns out of the oven. Spread each side generously with the tartare sauce. Next, place the fish on to the base of the bun, top with the salad, then place the bun on the top. Serve immediately.