Since the postings on this blog are already pretty...diverse, I figure it can't hurt to throw a few more topics into the mix. Today I'm sharing a recipe that I made for dinner. It's my third attempt at a dish along these lines and by far the most successful (it may not seem that complicated but trust me, the first try was a MESS). It was designed to use some things I found at the farmer's market and some things I had in the pantry and to be delicious; I love vegetables, but only when they taste good. I won't eat them just to feel virtuous. Have these with a nice salad (we had cherry tomato-strawberry caprese with spinach) and maybe some bread (we had the most delicious rye you will ever eat in your life) and it's the perfect light summer supper. This recipe is also, incidentally and accidentally, gluten free and vegetarian (although not vegan). I swear that just happened. Also, I know my food photography needs some work, but since this is the first of this type of entry, let's just give me a break, shall we?
Savory Vegetable Pancakes
Makes about 10 small pancakes (4-5 servings, depending on what else you're eating)
2 medium zucchini, shredded
2 large carrots, shredded
1/2 medium onion, shredded
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 15oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
Salt and pepper
1-2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1. Using several layers of paper towels (or cheesecloth, if you have it), squeeze as much water as possible out of the shredded vegetables. Once they look pretty dry, mix them together in a large bowl with the garlic and the parmesan.
2. Using your fingers (or a fork if you'd rather), mash up about 3/4 of the chickpeas so you're left with a mixture of whole chickpeas, pieces of chickpeas, and chickpea paste. Stir this into the vegetable mixture. Mix in the eggs and salt and pepper to taste and stir until well combined.
3. Heat a large nonstick pan (I used a well-seasoned cast-iron skillet) over medium heat with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Once the pan is hot and the oil is shimmering, drop large spoonfuls of the vegetable-egg mixture into the pan and flatten slightly with a spatula. Depending on the size of your pan you can probably fit 3-4 pancakes at once.
4. Cook until well browned on both sides, flipping halfway through, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer finished pancakes to paper towel-lined plate to rest and repeat with remaining mixture until you run out. Serve warm or at room temperature with cucumber-yogurt sauce (see below).
(This recipe is from my place of employment, America's Test Kitchen, with only a few minor adjustments: I use extra garlic and herbs, and I'm lazy about how to prep the cucumber. I LOVE this stuff and will put it on pretty much anything and/or eat it straight with a spoon.)
1 cucumber, seeded and chopped fine
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
Salt and pepper
Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl.
The flavors in this recipe are pretty mild; you could definitely add way more spices/herbs/flavorings to the pancakes (cayenne, paprika, basil, and lemon zest all come immediately to mind) or use a different sauce on top (applesauce would be delicious). The veggies could probably also be mixed up, but make sure you keep the egg-to-vegetable ratio pretty reasonable. If you do try cooking these, please please let me know what you think!
I just picked up April Bloomfield's new vegetable-centric cookbook A Girl and Her Greens today after flipping through at work and falling in love. April was the keynote speaker at the Cherry Bombe conference I reviewed in my first blog post (you can actually hear that conversation on the Radio Cherry Bombe podcast now) and she's one of my new food heroes. The book is completely charming and I can't wait to cook from it.
This recipe was developed while listening to the Spotify "Indie Covers" playlist, particularly this song: