Vegetable Fritters

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I’m not sure what to call these. Fritters? Savory pancakes? Kitchen sink doughnuts? Whatever they are, they make a nice side dish for dinner or a tasty breakfast of leftovers the next morning. Their portability also makes them good for packing in lunches.

Lately I’ve tried to come up with more non-recipe recipes—guidelines really—that call for a cup of this, a spoonful of that, a dash of whatever, along the lines of my waste-not soup and frittata. Cooking methods like these help you use up what you have on hand and thus waste less food. For this post, I shredded up whatever vegetables I found rolling around in the refrigerator. If you do a lot of juicing, you could try to make these with your spent vegetable shreds. Like my wise boss said at the office today, “Waste represents something you paid for but didn’t use.”

The basic method

For these fritters, I stirred shredded vegetables, eggs, some sourdough starter, a bit of baking soda and some salt into the consistency of thick pancake batter. For each fritter, I measured out a scant two tablespoons and fried them in coconut oil in my skillet.

Use flour and baking powder if you don’t keep a pet starter. When I do eat carbs (bread, crackers, pancakes, waffles, tortillas), I try to stick with those I made with my sourdough starter. The bacteria and yeasts in a starter eat the sugars and starches in the flour so your insulin doesn’t spike like it would after eating pasty white carbs. However, some of these fritter batters had a bit of a runny consistency and needed additional flour. I used whole wheat and didn’t ferment it. You certainly could ferment it though. Just mix everything but the vegetables and eggs and let the batter sit for several hours.

Zucchini: a little too much batter

squeeze zucchini

zucchini fritter
Zucchini pancakes

With the what-am-I-supposed-to-do-with-all-this-zucchini harvest about to occupy gardeners, I thought I would start with fritters made of these vegetables. They tasted yummy but after I squeezed the water out of two cups of shredded zucchini, I had more batter than vegetable. I topped these with a dollop of homemade sour cream and the green tops of new onions. Yum!

Carrot: A little too starchy

carrot and dill fritters

Don’t get me wrong, I liked both these and the zucchini fritters or pancakes or whatever they were. We gobbled up all of my experiments, but I think I added too many carrots here. I did like the sweet flavor of all those carrots though and these would have tasted good with maple syrup on them (I am Canadian…).

Veggie combo: just right

So the rescue fritters turned out the best—the ones I made with a combination of vegetables that I needed to use up. Coincidence? Well, yes actually. For these I used shredded carrots, parsnips and kohlrabi. The combination of starchy carrots and parsnips with the wet kohlrabi (it has a juicy, radish-like consistency) resulted in a not-too-wet, not-too-starchy batter. And the parsnips! I had no idea shredded parsnips, batter, salt and oil could taste so good together (seems a little obvious as I type that now…).

Ingredients

combo ingredients

The consistency of your batter depends on which vegetables you use. Adjust the amounts until you have a thick batter.

  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup sourdough starter
  • 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups various grated vegetables
  • 2 eggs
  • Oil for frying (I used coconut oil)

Directions

combo batter

1. Combine ingredients until you have a thick batter. If you don’t have a starter, increase the amount of flour until you create the desired consistency.

2. Heat up about 3 tablespoons of coconut oil in a frying pan.

2 tbsp batter
One day I’ll write a post on favorite kitchen tools and include this 1/8 cup (2 tbsp) scoop

3. Drop into the pan a scant 2 tablespoons of batter for each fritter.

combo in pan 2

4. Fry until golden, flip and fry the other side. Continue frying batter, adding more oil as needed.

5. Top with sour cream, crème fraîche, chopped green onions, sauerkraut or other garnishes.

Bon appétit!


Vegetable Fritters

Ingredients

  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup sourdough starter
  • 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups various grated vegetables
  • 2 eggs
  • Oil for frying

Directions

1. Combine ingredients until you have a thick batter. If you don’t have a starter, increase the amount of flour until you create the desired consistency.

2. Heat up about 3 tablespoons of coconut oil in a frying pan.

3. Drop into the pan a scant 2 tablespoons of batter for each fritter.

4. Fry until golden, flip and fry the other side. Continue frying batter, adding more oil as needed.

5. Top with sour cream, crème fraîche, chopped green onions, sauerkraut or other garnishes.

22 Comment

  1. So useful and variable in specifics! A great post.

  2. Looks yummy! I didn’t know that the critters digest some of the carbs. Maybe that’s why sourdough bread — the only kind of bread there was until recently — makes me feel so good.

    1. Thanks Aggie 🙂 Yup, the microbes chow down on the simple carbs. Several people have told me that bread doesn’t agree with them but they can eat sourdough without problems. I think many people are not so much gluten intolerant as they are bad bread intolerant. And you’re right, sourdough is what we ate for 6,000 years before the introduction of commercial yeast, which speeds up the process (and thus bakery profits).

      I hope all is well with you 🙂

      1. And well with you. Bad bread, I like that simple alliteration!

  3. […] just today the lovely Zero-Waste Chef posted something similar on her thoughts on Vegetable Fritters.  I find Anne-Marie’s use of Sourdough Starter in this way very […]

  4. Sounds so good. I’m growing some kohlrabi this year, but I have no idea what to do with it, so this could be a good idea!

    1. Thanks 🙂 Attracted by the pretty color, I bought some at the farmer’s market but I had never cooked with it and had no idea what to do with it either. I hope you like it!

  5. We eat LOTS of fritters, especially during the summer. I don’t use starter, rather I just add flour until I get the right consistency. Corn fritters with a touch of bacon and fresh herbs might be some of our favorite fritters. I don’t drain my zucchini either.

    1. YUM! Corn with bacon sounds fantastic! I’ll try the zucchini again without squeezing out the water. Thanks Becky 🙂

  6. My favourite fritters are zucchini and fetta with mint and lemon zest.

    “Waste represents something you paid for but didn’t use” – ouch!

    Madeleine.x

    1. Those sound delicious Madeleine! I have to add some cheese and zest to mine. Thanks for the great idea.

      Well, my boss is a writer, so she’s succinct 😉

  7. back home on the other side of the ditch I grew up making fritters and when I say that here they correct me with pancakes – so obviously the name is not important and they are so good . the big fav in this house is potato but I also like to use a combo of whatever is languishing around at the back of the coolroom – with a chutney or relish or a yogurt garlic sauce – whats not to love about them?

    1. Lol, I don’t know what to call them, Sandra. Delicious I guess 😉 I have to make some with potatoes. Another blogger friend of mine makes hers with potato and kimchi! The combinations are endless.

  8. Great idea – I hadn’t thought to use starter like this 🙂 I made my first sauerkraut recently by the way, and enjoyed some with my lunch today! Oh, that rhymes – haha!

    1. I always look for a way to use the starter I make every day 😉

  9. Yum! I did something similar a couple months ago and they were really good–but I didn’t write anything down! Love the looks of your recipe. I refried a couple the next morning for breakfast and they were even better! So leftovers of leftovers … at this rate I may be able to stop grocery shopping entirely. 🙂

    1. Hahaha, you will! I tell people I can make dinner out of practically nothing. Rock soup will be next!

  10. What a great way to use summer veggies–thx for the timely tips!!!

    1. Thanks for checking out the post, Lori 🙂

  11. I make something similar but I use Gram Flour with some baking powder, plus any sort of vegetables that I think might be nice. Used up a glut of runner beans once – the fritters were delicious.

    1. Oooh, that sounds delicious! I haven’t made anything with gram flour but I have seen it at the bulk store. I will have to get some now 🙂

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