Spicy Fish Cakes with Nuoc Cham Sauce and Fried Garlic Chips
A Vietnam War refugee who grew up in France, chef David Thai prepares Vietnamese dishes with classic French technique at Ana Mandara, mixing in flavors from all over Asia. He spikes these crispy and incredibly light fish cakes, for instance, with Thai red curry paste, but serves them in the typical Vietnamese "table salad" style: He lets guests wrap the cakes in lettuce leaves with fresh herb sprigs, cucumbers and mung beans, and he passes a pungent dipping sauce alongside. More Spicy Recipes
The fish cake mixture can be refrigerated overnight.
The spicy red curry paste in these cakes needs a white wine with some heft and richness, which the French grape variety Viognier tends to take on when it's grown in California's warm climate.