Ok, these things are awesome. AWESOME. They're like crack. Seriously. You will not be able to eat enough of them. I've been eating them for weeks. They go with everything. They reheat for lunches. They're better than potato pancakes, better than french fries. Even people who don't like veggies enjoy them. They just might be the perfect food.
Go easy on the flour if you want to keep them low carb. This recipe will work with gluten-free all-purpose flour as well as traditional. Try them. Tonight. You will thank me for it.
Oh, and don't skip on the dip. Seriously, DON'T.
1 cup broccoli florets
1 cup cauliflower
1/2 cup grated carrot
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp Nature's Seasons
1 tsp onion powder (or chopped chives/green onions)
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 - 1/2 cup flour (gluten free or wheat)
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
1 - 2 eggs
1/2 cup parmesan (can be freshly grated, or use the stuff you buy in a can in the store)
Frying oil (vegetable oil is fine)
1) Cut the broccoli and cauliflower into bite-sized chunks. This is a great time to use the more stemmy parts of the plant, as they work very well in this recipe. Steam or boil for 5 minutes; drain and add in carrots. Let sit a few minutes.
2) Now you need to coarsely chop the steamed veggies. You can do this with knives, or you can use a pastry cutter. Be careful not to mash the veggies; they should still be somewhat firm and maintain their shape.
3) Add in the dry ingredients and toss to coat. Now this part is important: TASTE the mixture before adding the eggs. The flour and the veggies can really absorb flavor, so you may need to add more seasonings before you add the eggs. You will need 1 - 2 of them, depending on size. The important thing is to get the right texture: mixture should be sticky enough to hold together when you squeeze it in the palm of your hand. This can be tricky if you're trying to go easy on the flour, so be patient. As long as a handful will hold together, you should be fine, but you may need to bite the bullet and add extra flour if it's being stubborn. In a pinch, you could use 1/4 tsp xanthan gum, but I've never needed to.
4) In a deep frying pan or small sauce pan, heat the oil to 180 degrees. Take a small handful of the veggie mixture, just big enough to fit in your palm, flatten into a disc shape, and slide it into the oil. BE CAREFUL not to splash the hot oil on yourself! You can use a large spoon to help with this process. I usually get five or six fritters into the oil, then watch them closely because they like to stick to the bottom of the pan. Fry till golden brown, flipping at least once. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate with a paper towel on it. Continue until all the veggie mix has been shaped and fried.
Now you have your fritters. DO NOT STOP HERE. You can fix the dip while you're frying the fritters up, so there's no excuse not to take the time to make this.
HOT RANCH DIP
1 package cream cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 package ranch dip mix
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1) In a small saucepan, warm the sour cream on low heat. Cut the cream cheese into chunks and mix into the sour cream; stir till consistency is smooth. Whisk in remaining ingredients. Mixture will thicken as it cools, so reheat gently if needed.
OK, now you have your fritters and your dip.
Now you dip the fritters into the dip and eat them.
I'll post pictures the next time I make these. Which won't be long, because they're seriously addictive.