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Pastel de Cabracho | Red Scorpionfish Cake

Are you looking for a tasty pâté to serve during the holiday season? Then, try this dish!

The Pastel de Cabracho was originally created by the famous Spanish chef Juan Mari Arzak in 1971. It is the perfect appetizer for a dinner party, especially served with some mayonnaise. It will definitely wow your guests because it looks so elegant and elaborate, but it’s quite easy to prepare if you have some patience as well as the good fortune to find fresh red scorpion fish.

Pastel de Cabracho recipe
Homemade Pastel de Cabracho

If you can’t find red scorpion fish though, no worries. You can substitute it with a mixture of fresh salmon and fresh hake. Do keep in mind that you will need a 1 liter metallic baking mold and another baking dish, larger than the previous one. You’ll find this dish interesting because you’ll learn how to cook in the typical Spanish way known as “Baño María”, which is a method of cooking in which you bake food using a water bath.

Pastel de Cabracho recipe

Pastel de Cabracho | Red Scorpionfish Cake Recipe

The Pastel de Cabracho or Red Scorpionfish cake was originally created by the famous Spanish chef Juan Mari Arzak in 1971. Do you want to learn how to prepare it? Follow this recipe
0 from 0 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 30 mins
Total Time 2 hrs
Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack, tapa
Cuisine Mediterranean, spanish, vasque
Servings 6 people
Calories 391 kcal


  • 1/2 kg fresh red scorpionfish without the head (alternatively you can use 250 grams of fresh salmon and 250 grams of fresh hake)
  • 7 eggs
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 leek
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 20 gram thin breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 liter cream
  • 1/4 liter tomato sauce
  • salt
  • pepper


  • Clean the leek. To do so, cut most of the green part as well as the bottom end. Peel some of the outer leaves off and wash it carefully, making sure that there is no trace of sand or soil remaining. Cut it into big pieces. Peel the carrots and cut them into big pieces as well.
  • Boil the red scorpionfish together with the leek, carrot and some salt. It should be ready after 12 minutes. Strain it and let it cool down on a plate.
  • Preheat your oven to 225ºC.
  • As soon as the fish is cool enough to hold with your hands, remove its scales and bones. Then, crumble the flesh into small bits.
  • Whisk the eggs in a bowl and add cream, tomato sauce and the crumbled fish. Add some pepper and salt and mix everything together with a fork.
  • Butter the metallic baking mold and sprinkle some thin breadcrumbs inside.
  • Pour the mixture into the metallic baking mold. Take the bigger baking dish and add some hot water. Then, place the metallic baking mold inside, so that it looks like an island surrounded by water. It doesn't need to be sinking in water, just make sure that the water covers half of the mold’s height. This technique is called “Baño María” and you will probably see it in various recipes.
  • Bake in the oven for about an hour and fifteen minutes. You will know that is ready by poking a fork inside the cake. If you remove the fork and it’s clean, it means that it is ready. If it is dirty, just keep it in the oven a few more minutes. Your loaf should be smooth and soft, with a pate-like texture.
  • Once it is ready, let it cool down, as this dish is commonly served cold. We suggest serving it with some mayonnaise.


Calories: 391kcalCarbohydrates: 10gProtein: 23gFat: 29gSaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 312mgSodium: 445mgPotassium: 567mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 4974IUVitamin C: 7mgCalcium: 133mgIron: 3mg
Keyword cake, pastel de cabracho, pastel de cabracho recipe, red scorpionfish cake recipe
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