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Thursday, June 25, 2015

Zucchini Bhaji (Fritters) for One

I like these fritters on top of a salad, but they’d be excellent on a bun with salad-y accouterments, or perhaps with with some naan and soup.

¾ cup grated zucchini
1/3 teaspoon coconut oil
¼ onion, diced
1 small garlic clove, diced
Pinch/shake of garum masala (or curry powder)
2/3 teaspoon cornstarch
Pinch xanthan gum
Pinch baking powder
Pinch of nama kalak (Black Himalayan salt), optional
Pinch of turmeric
¼ teaspoon peanut oil (canola or coconut will do, too)
2 ½ teaspoons water
1 TBLS almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)
¼ cup chickpea flour
Pinch baking powder

  1. Put the grated zucchini in a strainer and sprinkle with salt. It doesn’t matter how much salt, as you’ll be rinsing it off later. Massage the little zucchini bits, pushing the salt into the vegetable to draw out the water. (If you skip this step, you’ll have soggy bhaji.)
  2. Let it rest for 20 minutes and then rinse under cold water. Squeeze handfuls of the zucchini to get out the rest of the water, and then spread it on a clean dish towel or paper towel. Cover with another towel and press on it, to get the zucchini as dry as you can. Once it’s dry, put it into a small bowl and fluff it with a fork.
  3. In a frying pan, fry the garlic and onion in the coconut oil with some black pepper. When it’s soft, add in the garum masala. Take it off the heat after the garum masala has been in there for 1 minute.
  4. Now we get to do magic and make an “egg.” In a small bowl, add the cornstarch, xanthan gum, baking powder, and turmeric. Whisk it to combine the dry ingredients.
  5. In a small cup or bowl (I use one meant to hold soy sauce and wasabi for sushi), combine the water and oil. Slowly add the liquid to the dry ingredients, whisking as you go. The resulting mixture will be thick and gloppy. Try to get the lumps out, but it doesn’t have to be perfect. Add the almond milk a little at a time, whisking steadily. It will still be thick, like pancake batter.
  6. Back to the fritter now. In a small bowl, combine the garbanzo flour, salt, and baking powder. Add in the zucchini, the magical gloppy “egg” mixture, and the fried onion mixture. The result should be well-blended and the mixture should be stiff and thick.
  7. Heat some peanut oil (enough to cover the bottom of the frying pan) and drop the zucchini mixture by heaping TBLSP into the hot oil. Flatten the fritter a bit with the back of a fork, and fry until golden. Flip and fry the other side.
  8. Drain quietly on some paper towel so they’re not too greasy.
  9. You should get about 4 fritters out of this recipe.
  10. Eat them with banana relish (recipe coming shortly), faux sour cream, or dal.

  • If you’re out of xanthan gum, you can use 1 ½ teaspoons flax seed meal and 2 teaspoons water to make the faux egg. Just mix the two in a small bowl and leave it to form a glop for about 5 minutes. Then add in the turmeric and nala kamak and proceed as usual.

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