Cameroonian Fish Rolls

Cameroonian Fish Rolls

Afro- Foods, Savory, Snacks | April 9, 2015 | By

 

When I had fish rolls as a kid they sucked! My mom never made fish rolls, and the ones that I bought from street vendors and fancy restaurants sucked! Then I grew up and made friends from Cameroon that made awesome fish rolls; nothing like what I had as a kid. A perfect combination of a crisp and light crust with a savory fish filling. Let me tell you the story of how I shifted from hating fish rolls and share the recipe that made me fall in love with them.

When church service ended as a kid, all it meant to me was that it was time to wait for my parents to have their after church meetings. Sometimes those after-church meetings lasted longer than the church service, and my sisters and I would have to wait for hours to start the one hour journey it took us to get home. Thankfully, the wait was bearable because I got to hang out with the other kids that were made to wait as well. Our hang out spot was a little kiosk right beside the church that sold soft drinks aka “minerals” and light snacks. One of the snacks that was sold there were fish rolls. I hated those fish rolls!!! But they seemed like a fancy thing to get; the fish rolls were one of the more expensive snacks (child in the 90’s expensive), and everyone seemed to like them a lot. It was a thick dense dough roll with a sliver (if at all any) of the driest mackerel you’ve ever tasted. Memories of me trying to love those rolls make me shudder.

Well, years later I met some lovely Cameroonian girls in college, and one day, one of them offered me a fish roll. Before I saw what she had to offer, I cringed at thought the fish rolls I remembered as a kid, and tried to figure out how many bites I would need to endure to be polite. When she presented the fish rolls, they looked absolutely nothing like what I had as a child, and a bite of these “new” fish rolls changed my heart towards fish rolls all together.

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These fish rolls are absolutely scrumptious, try it!

Cameroonian Fish Rolls
Serves: 10
 
Ingredients
  • *For the Filling*
  • ½ a pound of fish filet
  • ½ a red onion chopped
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • *For the Dough*
  • 3 cups of all purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp melted butter
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp lukewarm water
  • Oil for deep frying
Instructions
  1. To make the filling, season the fish filet with salt and pepper and allow it to marinate for 1 hour. After the fish has marinated, place the fish in a steamer with the onions and steam for 10 minutes. Once the fish is done smash the fish with the onions. Adjust the seasoning at this point you you taste. You may add other spices and herbs as well.
  2. To make the dough, mix 1 cup of water, sugar and yeast and set aside for 10 minutes until the mixture becomes frothy.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking powder, and create a small well in the flour mixture. Pour in the frothy liquid ingredients and the butter and mix well with the flour to form a dough. The dough should be smooth and soft but not too sticky to handle. You may add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, if the dough is too sticky or add more water 1 tablespoon at a time if the dough is too stiff. I added 2 additional tablespoons of water to get the perfect texture. Knead the dough gently for 2 minutes, and set aside to rise for 45 minutes.
  4. Once the dough about doubles in size, divide into 10 equal pieces. Roll the dough into oval discs about ⅛th inch thick. On one of the narrow ends of the oval disc, place on tablespoon of the fish stuffing and seal as shown above.
  5. Deep fry each fish roll in a hot oil (about 365 degree F) until golden brown. Serve warm

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21 Comments

  1. ChiO

    April 15, 2015 at 9:58 am

    Oooo i remember these rolls as street food growing up. The street version did not look as good. It was very doughy with just a sprinking of fish. This looks delicious. What kind of fish did you use? will any fish work?

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      April 15, 2015 at 10:38 am

      Hey Chi! I used Pomfret, but you could use any type of fish. Tilapia works great.

      Reply
  2. ify@eatingnigerian

    April 18, 2015 at 8:36 am

    Really, some of those church meetings were longer than the service itself! Thankfully, church was a walking distance from home, lucky for us! Lol! These fish rolls look absolutely amazing. A street food here in Nigeria, i was never brave enough to disobey my mum’s warnings not to trust the source! Now i can make mine! Would make some in a few days. Thanks for sharing Lois! 🙂

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      April 21, 2015 at 12:02 am

      I wish church was walking distance, my church was like an hour drive on a good day. You didn’t miss anything from the street fish rolls, they taste better homemade.

      Reply
  3. esther

    May 2, 2015 at 1:11 pm

    wow this looks good. I used it for my project it really helped.

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      May 3, 2015 at 7:53 am

      I’m so happy to hear that Esther!

      Reply
  4. Wehnah

    October 19, 2015 at 9:58 pm

    Thanks so much for your recipe, I used Titus sardines and the rolls came out perfect. My kids love it. Been trying to do this for a while in vain. You just made my day!

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      November 2, 2015 at 2:05 pm

      I’m glad you like the recipe!

      Reply
  5. ogheneovo attule

    November 19, 2015 at 2:47 pm

    Ur fish roll looks so nice. Can u send me the procedure for making Nigeria fish roll?

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      March 21, 2017 at 7:33 am

      Hi ogheneovo, I might need to do a little more digging to find the recipe for Nigerian fish rolls, but I will see what I can do about it.

      Reply
  6. Ire

    March 2, 2016 at 5:45 pm

    Through this platform, I hv been able to .master the art of making fish rolls, now I fry on a daily basis cause it’s part of what gives me my income. Thanks dear

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      March 6, 2016 at 10:09 am

      I’m so glad to hear that Ire!

      Reply
  7. Sophia O

    August 13, 2016 at 6:21 am

    Nice write-up. I remember waiting for those after-church meetings but ee had walks ice-cream to keep us happy too…lol.
    I’m about to try this recipe now. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Reply
    • Sophia O

      August 13, 2016 at 6:22 am

      Nice write-up. I remember waiting for those after-church meetings but we had walls ice-cream to keep us happy too…lol.
      I’m about to try this recipe now. Thanks for sharing 🙂

      Reply
  8. adesewa

    September 20, 2016 at 2:19 am

    The reciep is actually understanding it makes good roll out

    Reply
  9. Ify Beauty

    December 4, 2016 at 2:33 am

    In the kitchen right now frying my fish roll but my hubby and the children don’t want to leave the kitchen for me to finish, they keep on collecting and eating the ready ones. They love it! Thanks so much MS. YUM, Am so glad.

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      February 12, 2017 at 2:56 pm

      Iam glad you liked it!

      Reply
  10. Bukola

    April 11, 2017 at 10:39 am

    yes indeed for me i love this fish roll, really nice to have after a long church meeting which always longer than church service , with a very chilled sobo drink.

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      April 11, 2017 at 12:47 pm

      Lol! I am glad you can relate. Cold zobo and fish roll is the best, you just gave me an idea for my Sunday snack. Did you enjoy any other snacks?

      Reply
  11. benazir khan

    July 7, 2017 at 8:58 pm

    thanks for sharing i am going to try this with canned fish because it is cheeper

    Reply
    • Ms. Yum

      July 8, 2017 at 8:47 am

      It is typically made with canned mackerel, so you will still enjoy the fish rolls. You can make them with any canned fish you already enjoy. Let me know how it turns out!

      Reply

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