The humble beetroot makes an outrageously good fritter. Who would have thought? This dish is promptly requested by my grandmother every time I visit, and I cannot blame her. With the help of spices and a rich tahini sauce, these beetroot fritters are worth eating again and again.
There’s something about thick, pan-fried batters. They almost inevitably result in something comforting, with a soft inside and, at least sometimes, crispy edges.
And the variations are endless. While meatballs in various shapes and forms (not quite a batter but pretty much the same concept) are a national dish in just about every country on the planet, you can also give the same treatment to virtually any vegetable.
I’m working on expanding my repertoire of, well, just about all the ingredients I can get my hands on. While the quality of vegetables are impeccable at my local market, the variation sometimes feels a little…lacking.
Perhaps I got spoiled living in London for ten years before coming here, because the selection is bountiful. Every week, the most beautiful tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, aubergine, parsley, dill, mint, lettuce, potatoes and more are on offer.
There’s also plenty of seasonal fare: corn, okra and greens in summer, celery root, pumpkin and cauliflower in winter and fresh peas, beans and garlic in spring. And lots more, of course.
In any case, one of the ways I am expanding my repertoire is by turning them into fritters. Gently spiced, for an exotic touch, but without overpowering the star of the show.
The first ones I really mastered were courgette fritters (or mücver as the Turks call them) – it is one of the most popular posts ever on my Norwegian language blog. They’ll make their way here too once I get around to translating the post and, perhaps, add a few new pictures.
Beetroots + strong flavours = deliciousness
It’s a vegetable too often overlooked. And too often not given enough of a challenge from spices and herbs.
Because beetroots take to spices well. Wherever there is beetroot, there is no need to be shy with the vinegar, spices, chili, herbs, cheese or whatever flavours you choose to add.
How to make beetroot fritters
For the beetroot fritters, I’ve combined beets with a courgette, to ensure they’re nice and moist.
The main spice I’ve used, is cumin. The doubling up of earthy flavours works perfectly here. Use whole cumin seeds if you can. They really up that earthiness a notch and will make these beetroot fritters that little bit extra special.
But I don’t stop there.
A generous pinch of chili, for a little heat (but nothing too numbing). Feta cheese, for that salty and savoury contrast. Fresh herbs for, well, freshness.
Fritters and sauces are best friends, and these beetroot fritters are no exception. Here, I’m tripling up on the earthiness with a tahini sauce.
A simple tahini sauce made with tahini, lemon juice and garlic is the perfect match for these beautiful ruby coloured beetroot fritters.