These little devils are packed to the brim with goodness – handfuls of fresh kale, sprouted lentils, zucchini etc – but more importantly, are tasty as f*#k. Delivered straight from a frying pan into your guests’ eager little hands, as they chat, drink and wait for dinner, these are guaranteed show stealers. Add a dollop of mango & mint awesome sauce?
Faff Factor: 3.5/5 * Flavour 6/5 * Fridge to Face: 20 mins
(Serves 4 as an appetizer)
2 packed cups of roughly shredded kale, any variety
1 cup grated zucchini
1 cup sprouted lentils
1 egg (or 1 flax ‘egg’ – 1 tbsp ground flax + 4 tbsp water)
1/4 cup chickpea flour
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric
s & p
Mango & Mint Awesome Sauce
1 bunch mint
1/2 bunch cilantro
1 1/2 cups canned mango pulp (not fresh mangos)
1/3 cup canned coconut milk (make sure to stir the contents of the can)
1 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 jalapeño, deseeded
2 large cloves of garlic
salt to taste
• Plain white flour an easy sub for chickpea flour if gluten isn’t an issue
• Sub in grated carrots or beets for zucchini or lentils, or just make all kale
1. First make your awesome sauce. Wash your herbs and shake out the excess water. Pick off the mint leaves and put them in a food processor with the cilantro (including stems), mango pulp, coconut milk, vinegar, cumin, turmeric, jalapeño and garlic cloves. Blitz until smooth. Add salt to taste.
2. Try not to eat entire bowl of mango sauce while you make the fritters… to help with this, chill in the fridge until needed.
3. Put a large heavy-bottomed frying pan on the stove to heat at medium.
4. If using flax egg substitution, mix ground flax and water in a small bowl. Set aside.
5. Add the cumin and coriander seeds to the hot pan. Toast for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Remove seeds from pan and set aside.
6. Wash the kale, and shake off excess water. Chop or shred roughly into ribbons or small pieces. Put through a salad spinner to get rid of any remaining water.
7. Put kale pieces into a large mixing bowl, grate in 1 cup of zucchini and add 1 cup of lentil sprouts. Sprinkle over chickpea flour, toasted cumin & coriander seeds, turmeric, a solid pinch of salt and a grind of pepper. Pour over flax egg, or crack egg on top. Using your hands, mix everything together, massaging the kale as you go. Don’t be shy here, make sure everything is evenly mixed.
8. Pour a slug of vegetable oil into your pan and allow to heat over med/high. To test whether or not your oil is hot enough, drop a small amount of the fritter mixture into the pan. If it sizzles vigorously, you’re good to go. Using a tbsp, scoop up a generous spoon of batter, using the edge of the bowl to press the mixture together and onto the spoon. Gently flip the loaded spoonfuls of mixture into the oiled pan – gently to avoid oil spitting on you – and repeat until the pan is full. Fry for 2-4 minutes each side, or until the surface of each flipped fritter is golden brown and crunch looking. Once flipped, gently press down on each fritter with the flipper, helping the mixture to come together and fry in place. Remove from pan and place on plate lined with kitchen paper. Add a new slug of oil to your pan and repeat for the next batch of fritters.
9. Sprinkle plate of fritters with flaky sea salt and serve with big bowl of mango & mint awesomeness on the side.
• Mango & mint awesome sauce is a throw everything into the food processor affair. Easy peasy.
• Washing and spinning the kale is probably the most labour intensive part of this recipe. (And ALWAYS the job I give my husband when he asks ‘what can I do to help?’, and then wishes he hadn’t…). On a good grocery shop week in our house, I prep bags of washed & shredded greens / kale / spinach / cabbage etc in the fridge so that I’m just grabbing handfuls of whatever I need, as I need it.
• The mango & mint awesome sauce is quite simply sensational. You may well eat the entire bowl with a spoon and forego the fritters…
• Mango Pulp is available at most Indian grocers. My local store – Donald’s – also stocks it. It’s not mango pieces in syrup you’re looking for, it’s a can of mango pulp. Mine listed the ingredients as 94% mango pulp, plus a little sugar & citric acid.
• I have only ever been able to find large cans of mango pulp, which means having a 1/2 can leftover. I recommend either making double quantities (freezes well), or adding to a glass with lime, tequila & cointreau for a kick ass margarita.
• These fritters work well with various substitutions, but changing up the veg will obviously change up the flavour. Go wild, experiment! I tend to stick to things that I would eat raw, because I prefer these fritters cooked to that magic place somewhere between ‘fried golden brown’ crunchy, and ‘just on the verge of cooked / uncooked on the inside’ crunchy. And I’m not going to lie, this is a grrrrrreat recipe for using up that massive jar of sprouts you made when you were feeling really enthusiastic about sprouts and made way too many, and now they’re just starting to turn brown at the edges…
• If the canned mango pulp is eluding you at the supermarket, these fritters also taste divine dipped in a bowl of yogurt mixed with a little lemon zest, lemon juice, salt & pepper.