Cumin fish burgers recipe

By: Nikki and Jordan Shearer

Masterchef NZ runners up Nikki and Jordan Shearer continue to impress us with their easy-to-make creations.

Cumin -fish -burger

Serves 2

During our time on Masterchef we faced a burger and chip challenge. Instantly we thought of a fish burger with a crunchy slaw… fresh, juicy and delicious. This recipe is perfect for a lazy Friday night when you don’t want to do takeaways but you also don’t want to spend hours in the kitchen. The caramelised macadamias can be omitted but to be honest… once you have tried them you will be adding them to everything… definitely worth the time!


  • 2 Tbsp cumin seeds
  • Rock salt
  • 2 Tarakihi fillets, trimmed and cut into 6-8 cm portions
  • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed, cleaned and sliced thinly on a mandolin
  • 1 cup green cabbage, finely sliced
  • 2 fresh red chillies, deseeded and finely diced
  • 2 Tbsp capers
  • ¼ cup parsley, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp mayonnaise (we use Best Foods)
  • 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small clove garlic, peeled and crushed
  • ½ tsp dried oregano (we use freeze dried) 


  • 150g macadamia nuts
  • 10g unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp caster sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 burger buns


  1. Dry roast the cumin seeds over medium heat for a couple of minutes to lightly toast. Be careful not to let them burn.
  2. Crush seeds in a mortar and pestle, add salt and then coat the fish in the mixture. Set aside.
  3. Combine fennel, cabbage, red chillies, capers and parsley into a bowl. Mix and set aside.
  4. In a medium size jar add the mayonnaise, vinegar, olive oil, garlic, and oregano. Shake to combine, season and set aside.
  5. Over a medium heat, dry roast the macadamia nuts until just starting to colour. Add butter and stir until the butter has melted.
  6. Add the sugar, salt and chilli flakes and continue to stir until the mixture starts to caramelize and the sugar has melted. Take care that it does not burn.
  7. Spread this mixture on a sheet of baking paper and leave to cool and set.
  8. When set, roughly chop.
  9. Halve the buns and toast inside surfaces on a medium heat in 1 Tbsp of olive oil until coloured.
  10. Just before serving, fry the fish portions in 1 Tbsp of olive oil until just cooked. This will only take a few minutes.
  11. Stir through 2 Tbsp of mayonnaise to the slaw, add the nuts and place slaw on the bottom of the bun.
  12. Top with a couple of fish portions pouring over extra mayo if desired.
  13. Add the bun top and serve.

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