My favorite! As a little kid, I was fascinated by the Tod Mun stall at markets, seeing the fish cakes puff up and float in hot oil. The lady would form the patties by dropping a spoon full of fish paste into a circular, 2 inch in diameter bamboo sleeve. She would quickly level the cake and scrape it off into the wok full of hot oil. A few seconds later, the round patties floated to the top all puffy. But they only stayed puffy until they were scooped out of the wok. As they cooled, they went back down to their previous size. I called them the ‘deceitful tod mun’.
Tod Mun is eaten as a snack or appetizer in Thailand. But as with many Thai appetizers, Tod Mun can be eaten with rice as a main course. The salty and spicy fish cakes go so well with the crunchy and nutty cucumber sauce.