Zucchini Fritters & Chickpea Salad

Always on the lookout for ways to use zucchini, and also for ways to make fritters of one kind or another, I tried making zucchini fritters yesterday.  Well, not exactly zucchini fritters.  Most of the zucchini fritter recipes I saw had cheese in them and I’m trying to limit cheese right now.  I saw one cheeseless recipe that I will probably make some time in the future, but I yesterday I wanted my fritters to be a bit of a cross between a fritter and pancake.  So I just started winging it.

I don’t have much in the way of measurements for this recipe.  I put two medium sized zucchinis, four or five medium potatoes, and three or four smallish Vidalia onions  in the food processor and processed them until they were pretty well pulverized.  I put them in a bowl and added two eggs, a splash or two of soy milk, four or five handsful of unbleached flour, maybe about an eighth to a quarter of a cup of sugar, some hot pepper flakes, and salt to taste.  I forgot to put some oil in the mix, but in retrospect, I don’t think any oil was needed in the batter.

I used my newly renovated and well seasoned (with shortening) cast iron frying pan to cook them (on medium-low heat), and it did a beautiful job.  I did use oil in the pan (extra light olive).

Maybe these were a less guilty way of enjoying a potato fritter or pancake, since the zucchini is lower in calories and carbohydrates.  I don’t know.  I do know that I enjoyed them a lot, with ketchup, of course, and have enough put away in the fridge to keep me supplied with a quick light meal or snack or side dish for the next week.

From my perspective, ketchup is its own food group, and many foods exist entirely for the purpose of conveying ketchup to the mouth.  These fritters/pancakes are not an example of those kinds of food.  They are good on their own, and would probably be really good with sour cream.  But they’re definitely a nice way to convey ketchup to the mouth.

~  ~  ~  ~  ~

I don’t eat meat.  I don’t really have any opinions one way or the other about whether or not you should eat meat.  But I don’t want to eat meat, myself.  Several years back, I was sharing a house with some other people who don’t eat meat, and this gave me a great opportunity to learn about some new kinds of meatless dishes.  One of these was chickpea salad.

Chickpea salad is a great substitute for tuna or chicken salad in a sandwich, or on a bed of lettuce, and it’s pretty easy to make.  I use a pressure cooker to cook the chickpeas, but however you’re accustomed to cooking your chickpeas, cook them up good, and then mash them in a bowl with a fork.  You can leave them a bit chunky if you prefer, or you can mash them until they’re almost smooth.  I like them more smooth than not, myself.

Add mayonnaise, relish, chopped celery, onions, celery seed, or whatever you like to put in your tuna salad or chicken salad.   I also add a little bit of sugar and a touch of salt to mine.  And that’s it.  Use it the same way you would use chicken or tuna salad.

Note: I like to cook up way more chickpeas than I’m going to need and then freeze whatever I don’t use, so I won’t have to use the pressure cooker every time I want some chickpea salad.

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