Swiss Chard Fritters With Feta, Fennel and Radish

This recipe from the New Orleans-based restaurant pairs crisp, lemony Swiss chard fritters with creamy feta and a radish-fennel salad.

From the Wall Street Journal.

There’s no way to lose with these ingredients, especially when you deep fry the fritters in ghee.  You probably don’t need three inches of oil either. That sounds like something a pro would do.

With a Summer veggie garden largess, swiss chard, radishes and fennel are always more abundant than we can eat. We saw this recipe and decided to take a page from the best of our Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) organizations and share recipes for the goodies being distributed to the community. Feel free to play around with the ingredients and experiment with what’s growing in your garden.

ZING BEARERS | Dill, mint and lemon zest mixed into the batter brighten the earthy flavor of the Swiss chard. Christopher Testani for The Wall Street Journal, Food Styling by Heather Meldrom, Prop Styling by Stephanie Hanes

The Chef: Susan Spicer

Her Restaurants: Bayona and Mondo, both in New Orleans

What She’s Known For: Bringing easygoing grace to fine dining in the Crescent City. Delivering global flavors with classical-French finesse.

SUSAN SPICER RUNS a democratic kitchen. “It’s the stone soup approach,” she said. “Everyone has something to add. I want cooks to feel invested.” She credits Amarys Herndon, her sous-chef at Bayona, for this dish of chard fritters with whipped feta and a fennel-radish salad. “Amarys made this for a special one night, and I was like, ‘That is the best thing I have ever tasted with chard,’ ” she said. “Though I like greens, chard is probably my least favorite; it can taste too earthy. But these fritters were lighter than I expected. They really elevated the chard experience.” The batter, made of shredded chard, beaten egg and chickpea flour, quickly fries up into airy puffs, crisp on the outside and creamy within. Finding the right way to complete the plate was largely intuitive. “The fritters felt Greek to me,” Ms. Spicer explained. “That’s why we used feta and lemon in the sauce.” The shaved radish and fennel provide needed contrast: “If we do something fried, we like to put a nice, fresh element in there too

 

 

Ingredients

Swiss Chard Fritters With Feta, Fennel and Radish

Total Time: 35 minutes Serves: 4

2 bunches Swiss chard, stems removed and leaves roughly chopped

1 cup chickpea flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

3 eggs

½ cup soda water

1 tablespoon lemon zest, plus juice of half a lemon

1 teaspoon finely grated garlic

2 tablespoons finely chopped dill, plus sprigs for garnish

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon Aleppo pepper

½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Olive oil, for frying and drizzling

1 cup feta cheese, at room temperature

½ cup cream cheese, at room temperature

6 radishes, thinly sliced

2 small fennel bulbs, thinly sliced

 

Directions

1. In a food processor, pulse chard until finely shredded. Remove ⅔ of chard and set aside in a large bowl.

2. Add chickpea flour, baking powder, baking soda, eggs and soda water to chard remaining in food processor. Process until evenly mixed, about 1 minute.

3. Scrape chard purée into large bowl with shredded chard. Add lemon zest, garlic, dill, mint, cinnamon, Aleppo pepper and nutmeg to bowl and fold everything together. Season with salt and pepper. Set batter aside.

4. In a medium pot over medium-high heat, bring 3 inches oil to 350 degrees. Use a deep-fat or candy thermometer to monitor temperature and keep it steady throughout cooking.

5. Meanwhile, clean bowl of food processor. Add feta and cream cheese and process until fluffy. Season with lemon juice and salt. Set aside. In a medium bowl, toss radishes and fennel slices with a squeeze of lemon juice, a light drizzle of olive oil and salt to taste. Set aside.

6. Use a ladle to add 3 tablespoons batter to oil. Working in batches, fry 4 fritters at a time until crisp and puffy, about 2 minutes per side. Use a slotted spoon to transfer fritters to a paper-towel-lined plate and season with salt.

7. To serve: Smear feta spread onto each plate. Place 2-3 fritters and some fennel-radish salad alongside. Garnish with dill sprigs.

 

Mediterranean 5-grain Salad with Sunchokes, Beets & Mozzarella

Our friends at Green Kitchen Storie  created this salad in collaboration with Swedish/Italian family company Zeta. They are launching a new range of organic whole grain mixes . Since grains can be a little colourless, they asked Green Kitchen Stories for a delicious recipe that looked stunning (no pressure, right). Luise and Elsa share a deep love for Italy and Italian flavours and they truly indulged in that while creating this salad.

The grains add a nourishing base for this salad and they are tossed in pesto for extra flavor. They add sunchokes that are roasted until buttery soft  and mix with thinly sliced raw, crunchy chioggia beets (aka candy cane or polka beets) and radishes. Of course they threw in some mozzarella and pine nuts (influenced by Italy!), and added red grapes for sweetness. All in all, it’s a real beauty of a salad, it is very nourishing and tastes just as good as it looks.

The idea of mixing chioggia beets with radishes for a colourful kick is shamelessly inspired by some of the salads in Erin Irelands instagram feed (worth checking out btw!).

Mediterranean 5-grain Salad with Sunchokes, Beets & Mozzarella
Serves 4–6

1 bag (250 g / 1 1/2 cup) Zeta organic 5-grain mix (Farro, Barley, Kamut, Brown Rice and Oat Groats), or grains of choice
500 g / 1 lb sunchoke/jerusalem artichoke
2 chunks mozzarella di bufalo
4 polka beets (chioggia) or yellow beets, peeled
1 bunch radishes, rinsed
200 g / 7 oz red grapes, halved
1 handful pine nuts, lightly toasted
2 handfuls rucola/arugula
1 bunch fresh basil

Pesto dressing
5 tbsp green pesto
2 tbsp cold-pressed olive oil
juice from 1/2 lemon

Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F. Rinse and brush the sunchokes (don’t bother peeling them) and cut them in 5-10 mm (1/4-inch) slices. Place the slices in a bowl, drizzle over olive oil and toss them until everything is covered in oil. Spread out the slices on a baking sheet covered with baking paper. Roast for 30-40 minutes or until soft with crispy edges.

Meanwhile, cook the grains in a large sauce pan filled with salted water, following the cooking time on the package. Drain any excess water and scoop the grains back into the sauce pan.

Stir together the pesto dressing and pour over the grains in the sauce pan. Make sure they are all covered and then pour the grains out onto a wide plate or salad bowl.

Layer with sunchoke slices and torn mozzarella chunks. Use a mandolin (or sharp knife) to shave the polka beets and radishes very thinly and spread on top of the salad together with pine nuts, grapes, rucola/arugula and basil.

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