The recipe came about from some experimentation with sweetcorn fritters. Recently Becky was home for a visit & we realised we have both started eating sweetcorn. This comes after years of being repulsed by anything associated with it. We blame this on our school meals.
The food at our school was disgusting, really disgusting. We hated it & often did not even go into the dining room, there was no point as nothing was edible. We know everyone complains about their school food but honestly this was in a terrible league of its own. The queue for the tuckshop was a fierce place.
One of the worst aspects of the food was the blatant re-cycling. For example we would get lasagna (the oiliest most tasteless lasagna you can imagine) with peas & carrots for lunch. Then the leftover peas & carrots would appear in the soup the following day, and the day after that until it was all reluctantly eaten. I guess cans of sweetcorn are cheap because we were served it a lot. Then it would appear in inappropriate places for days after. By the time we left school sweetcorn was on our food blacklist.
Twenty years later & we have both started to enjoy corn. At its best it is so sweet & crunchy. We decided to make some fritters but could not agree which type to make so we tried a few. Sally’s current favourite recipe is for these Mexican-style corn fritters by Crumbs & Tales. Becky is into Indian-style ones like this recipe from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. We made these two & then did a little invention for the third with some Thai flavours.
Becky has to turn everything into a competition so insisted that we rate the fritters & proclaim a winner. As you can see the Thai ones were definite favourites so we thought we would share the recipe. We have to say that the main reason the Thai ones won was execution. Sally failed to produce the Mexican ones properly so they were not nearly as tasty as usual & the Indian ones were lacking in salt & the batter was way too heavy (we were too hungry to fix it). All the recipes are great (Sally has been eating the Mexican ones obsessively for months) so you should try them all.
Basically corn fritters are really addicitve. The texture is amazing, we recommend fresh corn as it is much crunchier. You can add all sorts of flavours to a basic batter. The batter can be made with any sort of flour, regular wheat flour is fine. Then you can make up some dips and turn a basic snack into something gorgeous.
We used coconut flour here for flavour & it works really well. If you don’t have it you could use regular flour & make the batter with coconut milk instead of water. The lime, chilli & lemongrass should all be pungent. If you don’t have lime leaves, add more rind. We didn’t use fish sauce because it is not vegetarian but it would work really well.
Thai-Style Sweetcorn Fritters
Ingredients (makes about 12)
1 cob corn (or a can of sweetcorn)
4 spring onions
1 tsp coriander seeds (toasted & ground)
1 stalk lemon grass
2-3 Kaffir lime leaves
1 cm ginger
2 tsp sugar
1/2 birds eye chili (or to your taste)
handful of coriander leaves
juice & rind of a lime
50g coconut flour
50g rice flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
sweet chili sauce
1. Prepare the batter by mixing the coconut flour, rice flour, baking powder, eggs & salt. Add cold water slowly to get the correct consistency – it should be a bit thicker than a regular pancake batter. Leave it to sit while you prepare the other ingredients as the coconut tends to absorb liquid.
2. Slice the corn from the cob & place in a bowl. Finely slice the spring onion & add that.
3. Prepare the aromatics. Grate the ginger & slice the lemongrass, chili & lime leaves really fine so that they do not give too much texture in the fritters. Add these & the sugar, chili, chopped coriander leaves, ground coriander, the lime juice & rind. Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
4. Check the batter & add more water if it has become thicker. Mix the batter & dry ingredients. Heat some vegetable oil in a frying pan & make a tester fritter to check the consistency of the batter & the seasoning. They should be fried on a medium heat for 3-4 minutes each side, or until brown & crispy. If you find that the tester has uncooked batter in the middle then add some liquid. If the batter is too thin add more rice flour. The fritters may also need more salt or chili.
5.Fry the fritters in batches being sure not to overcrowd the frying pan or they will not get crispy. Place them cooked fritters on kitchen paper to soak up any excess oil.
Serve with Thai sweet chili dipping sauce. The fritters keep well in the fridge for a couple of days or you can just cook up as much of the batter as you need & keep the batter in the fridge to fry up the next day.
by Becky & Sally