Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Chili Lime Lentil Fritters

This recipe came about as I browsed Fields of Greens searching for a way to use up an abundance of spinach.  I didn't have any mung beans called for in the recipe, so I tried it with lentils, and it worked out!

First off, I soaked a cup of lentils overnight.  You don't usually have to soak lentils to cook them, but I was pretending they were mung beans.  In the morning, after the soak and a nice rinse, I pureed them in my trusty food processor with half a cup of water. It took a long time to get a smooth paste, 5 minutes or so.  There was a lot of scraping down the sides of the bowl and whatnot, but finally I was satisfied.  Then it all went back into my lovely lidded Pampered Chef batter bowl to sit on the counter all day and ferment a little bit.  Fermentation, it is the next big thing.  Really, it makes these little fritters super light and dare I say, delicate!

9 hours later...

I added half a bag of spinach, sliced into thin little ribbons (the foodies call it chiffonade)
2 jalapenos from my front yard, diced finely, seeds removed (although in the future I am going to leave the seeds in!)
about 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, all chopped up
2 cloves garlic crushed and minced
the finely chopped zest and also the juice of a lime
about a teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon roasted ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

The batter looked like this:
I don't do much deep frying around here, but not because it is messy or because it makes the house smell funny (which were both reasons I think my mother used to discourage my dad from doing more deep frying when I was a kid).  I don't usually have enough vegetable oil to fill a pan to a depth of 2 inches!  Just recently though, I bought a giant jug of the stuff to make soap with and still had a goodly amount left.  Also I dug out my candy thermometer, which I highly recommend so you can keep an eye on the temperature of the oil.  These fritters cooked best in oil that was between 325º and 350º F. They took about 5 minutes.  It was exciting to see them all floating around in the oil getting golden brown and crispy.  We got about 30 fritters by dropping rounded teaspoonfulls of batter in.  Much bigger than that and they got too dark on the outside before they were done in the middle. 
I guess they don't look like much, but they were so good Keith and I ate them all by ourselves.  I liked them dipped in yoghurt, he sauced them with the Red Rooster sauce, but either way they were like amazing nutritious hush puppies form a foreign land.  I will definitely make them again.

No comments: