Tuesday, May 10, 2011

May 9: Veggie Fritters and Asian Salad

   Vegetable or other light-colored oil, for frying
2 cups complete pancake mix (the "just add water" type)
1 cup shredded carrots or 1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
1 10-ounce box frozen chopped broccoli, defrosted in microwave and squeezed dry in a kitchen towel
1/2 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and finely chopped
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
3 scallions, chopped
2 teaspoons hot sauce, such as Tabasco
   Coarse salt

3 tablespoons tahini (sesame paste)
2 tablespoons tamari
   Juice of 1 lime
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons hot sauce
   Coarse salt
1/2 pound asparagus spears, blanched, then chopped
3 cups stemmed arugula or baby spinach leaves, chopped
1/2 seedless cucumber, chopped
6 radishes, thinly sliced
1 underripe Hass avocado, scooped from skin and chopped

Fill a deep, large skillet with about 1 1/2 inches vegetable or other light-colored oil. Heat the oil over medium heat until a 1-inch cube of bread browns to a deep golden color in a count of 40.

In a large bowl, stir together the pancake mix and 1 1/4 cups of water to combine. Then, add the veggies, hot sauce, and sesame seeds.

Use 2 tablespoons to drop 2-inch fritters into the pan. Cook small batches of fritters, no more than 6 at a time - do not crowd the pan or you will cause the temperature to drop too far, too fast.

The fritters should cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side to a deep golden color. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels to drain, and season with salt while they are hot. The recipe should yield 16 to 20 pieces, 4 or 5 fritters per portion, depending on the uniformity of size.

In the bottom of a salad bowl, combine the tahini, tamari, and lime juice with a whisk and stream in the vegetable oil.

Season the dressing with hot sauce and salt. Add the chopped asparagus, arugula, cucumber, radishes, and avocado to the bowl and toss gently to combine.

Top the salad with the fritters and serve.


This is the variation of the Shrimp and Crab Fritters. It may be a little healthier with all those veggies in there, but it's still extremely greasy. I remember last year I made this recipe and since we had had fritters the day before, I ended up making veggie pancakes instead. The fritters taste better, but probably aren't better for you :). The salad was good, but I messed up on it. I forgot to chill the asparagus, so it wilted the arugula and the salad ended up being lukewarm. I will refrigerate it and try it cold. It has a great flavor, but I'm sure it's much better cold.

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