It’s been a long time since I’ve been here with you, and done a blog post, lots of very good reasons for sure, but at the heart of it was a plate that was full to overflowing, and an entirely new email and web system being built, both on different platforms than before. Doing a blog in between platforms just felt a little too daunting.Totally rebuilding the website from scratch demanded that I also have a very good think why I continued to keep a blog in the new website. I loved this article on maintaining a long term blog by Heidi Swanson, and others at that time – Heidi talks about this being her practice and the commitment to that practice, and it made me query just actually what my practice was. Along with cooking, writing and photography, the blog itself was a part of her practice. It became immediately clear that for me, my blog was not an essential part of my practice – but rather teaching and writing, that formed that core. I’m not a great photographer and to be honest, I don’t want to learn too much more there – I just don’t have room in my brain for that. That room is saved for learning more about how fats – or any food really – works. I don’t have the ability to run a consistent weekly, fortnightly or monthly blog – some times I am just loaded with teaching commitments (the Whole and Natural Foods Chef Training for example), and sharing my knowledge with in the books I write.
Knowing this, I settled with going ahead with the blog and that I will make it here monthly as best I can, but I knew that I also wanted to be here with you and share what is going on, life and recipe or two. But I also know that I share all those things with you in each of my books, and most certainly in the new book (May 2016) – the book is just about finished (just a few more recipes to go) and editing to commence. I’m incredibly happy with this new baby, I think you will be too. My plan is to post here monthly, and to send out a quarterly newsletter with information and cooking for the season ahead – you can subscribe to that newsletter here
For now, I’d like to give you this yummy and simple recipe, using very seasonal ingredients and to say how lovely it is to be back here with you. Right now, parsnips are being pulled and apples are being picked, and they are a glorious combination. Combined with sage and herbs, a little left over cooked grain and a couple of eggs, they make the most wonderful fritters to eat, any time of the day. I think they will be perfect for the cooler Autumn weather over the long weekend.
Apple, Parsnip and Sage Fritters
If your parsnips are freshly pulled (or have been recently) you can simply scrub their skin well. If old (which they should not be at this time of the year) they will need to be peeled. Choose apples that are tart rather than sweet, and don’t hold back with the sage – it works so well with parsnip. With regards to the onion – any thing will work, if all you have is spring, finely slice and use that – leek, brown, shallot and red will just require a little longer cooking time. And, can I say, that if you have any soft fennel frondage around, it is wonderful added to the mix also.
Bring a medium pot of salted water on the stove to come to the boil. Cut the parsnip into 3 – the top third cut into quarters, the middle third cut in half and leave the thin bottom third as is. Carefully cut the woody core from the quarters and discard. Add the parsnip pieces to the hot water and cook for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool a little.
Add the olive oil and onion to a small frying pan and cook over a medium heat, adding the ground fennel and coriander after a minute or so. Stir through and cook until lightly caramelised – about 5 minutes. Place the cooked parsnip in a food processor pulse until it has the appearance of being grated – don’t over process. Add to a mixing bowl with the cooked onion, cooked grain, grated apple, chives, sage leaves, pepper, salt and eggs. Mix together gently until well combined.
Add enough ghee and olive oil to the fry pan (I like to use about 2/3 ghee 1/3 evoo ratio) to come about 3mm up the side of the pan. When hot, but not at all rippling or smoking, add about 1 tablespoon mixture, gently patting it down. The mix should sizzle when it hits the fat. Cook for 5 minutes or until very golden (not at all burnt), turn and cook for another 5 minutes or until very golden. These do take a little while to cook through and it is this that will help keep them together. Drain on a paper towel before serving.
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