Boxty with mackerel


Simply fried mackerel served with crisp potato pancakes makes an easy treat for a weekend lunch.


For the boxty

For the mackerel

  • 4 small mackerel, gutted and butterflied or filleted
  • 2–3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • knob of butter
  • dill, chopped, to garnish
  • 1 lemon, juice only, to serve

For the salad


  1. For the boxty, put the colcannon (or mash), grated potato and flour in a bowl and mix until combined. Stir in the milk, little by little, until you have a wet dropping consistency. Season with salt and pepper.

  2. Heat a frying pan over a medium–high heat. Add a little butter and oil, when the butter begins to foam, spoon heaped tablespoons of the mixture into the frying pan and fry for 3–4 minutes on each side until golden-brown.

  3. Remove and place on a warm plate lined with kitchen paper. Repeat with the remaining mixture. Keep the pancakes warm in a low oven, if necessary.

  4. For the mackerel, coat the mackerel fillets with a little oil and garlic. Season with salt and pepper.

  5. Heat a frying pan over a high heat and add a splash of oil and the butter. When the butter is foaming, add the mackerel skin-side down and fry for 3–4 minutes until the skin is crisp and the flesh is opaque.

  6. Meanwhile, make the salad. Place the lettuce leaves in a large bowl. Mix the oil, vinegar and mustard in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper and pour over the leaves. Toss to coat.

  7. Serve the mackerel with the potato pancakes. Finish with a little dill over the pancakes and a squeeze of lemon juice on the fish.

Recipe Tips

If you don't have any leftover mashed potato, you can buy frozen mash from the freezer section of most supermarkets.