Sweet Potato, Courgette and Paneer Baked Fritters

sweet-potato-courgette-and-paneer-baked-fritters The lovely people over at Savera Paneer sent me some of their paneer to play with. If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter, you will have seen the bloggers pack I came home to last week. Inside the large saffron hued box were a bag of cumin seeds, a bag of turmeric powder, a branded water bottle and a really cute yellow and blue lunch box containing an ice pack and two packs of paneer made from skim milk thus containing only 8% fat. There were also a couple of delicious sounding recipe cards  which had been developed by the talented  food writer, Deena Kakaya who is probably familiar to many of you as she visits so many of our blogs, commenting and encouraging.sweet-potato-courgette-and-paneer-baked-fritters Well, the lunch box came in really handy as Jake started work experience at a law firm this week, which he has really enjoyed. He’s been to court nearly every day and also written official letters to clients detailing progress on their cases. Not bad for someone who has to be reminded 3 times to take the rubbish out!

I had not cooked with paneer before this so I had a little research to do before I started experimenting. Paneer, an Indian cheese,  is traditionally made at home from the curds formed when lemon juice is mixed with hot milk. It’s a fresh, bland, unsalted cheese which can be substituted with Queso Blanco or Fresco. It is quite crumbly, an excellent source of protein and absorbs flavours beautifully. It really is a cheese to cook with rather than eat as is and is most often found cubed, sautéed and added to spicy vegetable based sauces and gravies.

There are hundreds and hundreds of Indian recipes which use paneer so, I really wanted to use it in a different way. And as Savera had gone to the trouble of developing a low fat cheese, I wanted to make something fairly healthy. No frying or rich sauces but lots of  vegetables and flavourings. At the green grocers, a bag of sweet potatoes caught my eye and which made me think about latkes and so idea for these Sweet Potato, Courgette and Paneer Baked Fritters was born. sweet-potato-courgette-and-paneer-baked-fritters Keeping in mind the tips I had gleaned on how to use it, I grated and seasoned the paneer and set it aside to absorb the flavours. Honestly, I was a bit hesitant when I saw how crumbly the paneer looked but it grated easily and absorbed the flavours of the spices absolutely perfectly. sweet-potato-courgette-and-paneer-baked-fritters I also grated the sweet potato and courgette and left them to drain separately. When it came time to assemble the fritters, I mixed them all together with a light hand then added a little flour and some raw couscous and stirred in a beaten egg. Set on a lightly oiled baking sheet, and brushed with a little more oil, the fritters baked up beautifully. sweet-potato-courgette-and-paneer-baked-frittersThe Sweet Potato, Courgette and Paneer Baked Fritters were light and crunchy with a lovely smoky flavour from the paprika and cumin. I had wanted to add fresh mint to the mixture but realised that I didn’t have any when I started cooking – I think it would be a lovely addition. Serve with a wedge of lemon and a little tzatziki and some salad leaves and you have a delicious light lunch or first course. sweet-potato-courgette-and-paneer-baked-fritters   sweet-potato-courgette-and-paneer-baked-frittersA big thank you to Savera Paneer for introducing me to this lovely product! I have a few more recipes to make and post in the coming days.

As it is Friday, I am taking these over to that fabulous party over at Angie’s – Fiesta Friday. Crowd control aka co-hosts this week are Elaine @ foodbod and Prudy @ Butter Basil and Buttercrumbs.

Courgettes are in season so I am also entering them into the Simple and In Season hosted by Ren @ Renben and guest-hosted this month by Sally @ My Custard Pie.

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Please do take a look at their fabulous blogs – you will come away chock full of great ideas for recipes to take you through the summer and beyond! And, don’t be shy – visit as many of the blogs as you can, follow the ones that are new to you, leave comments and tuck in!!

Sweet Potato, Courgette and Paneer Baked Fritters

  • Servings: makes 12 fritters
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
INGREDIENTS

  • 1 medium sized sweet potato/kumara – about 200g
  • 1 medium sized courgette/zucchini – about 200g
  • 125 g grated Saveera Paneer
  • 1 clove of garlic grated or crushed
  • ½ tsp smoked paprkia
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tsp coriander powder
  • juice of ¼ of lemon
  • ¼ cup parsley
  • 50 g flour
  • 1 Tbsp raw couscous
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • olive oil

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Peel the sweet potato and grate – try and get long strands. Place in a colander sprinkle with a little salt, mix and leave to drain for at least half an hour.
  2. Grate the courgette – try and get long strands. Place in a separate colander sprinkle with a little salt, mix and leave to drain for at least half an hour.
  3. Grate the paneer. Sprinkle over the garlic, smoky paprika, cayenne pepper, cumin powder, coriander powder and squeeze over the lemon. Using a fork, toss to mix and leave to marinate for at least half an hour.
  4. When you are ready to cook, pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F.
  5. Line a baking tray with parchment and spray with an olive oil cooking spray or smear with a little olive oil.
  6. Squeeze out as much liquid as you can from both the sweet potato and the courgette and place in a mixing bowl.
  7. Add the chopped parsley and the paneer and using a fork, toss to mix well but lightly. Have a taste of the mixture at this point to see if it needs any salt. I found that the salt I used during draining was enough.
  8. Sprinkle in the flour and couscous and again, using a fork, toss to mix.
  9. Stir in the lightly beaten egg and mix.
  10. Mound about 1 ½ Tbsp of the mixture on the prepared tray and press down with a fork to flatten and make a rustic looking fritter. You should get about 12 portions from the mixture. I baked six at a time in two batches.
  11. Drizzle with a little olive oil and bake for 10 minutes. Flip them over and bake for 5 minutes more or until golden brown and crispy
  12. Serve hot, with a wedge of lemon and a dollop of Greek yoghurt mixed with a little mint.

© Selma Jeevanjee and Selma’s Table, 2013, 2014. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material, including photographs without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Selma Jeevanjee and Selma’s Table with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

© Selma Jeevanjee and Selma’s Table, 2013, 2014. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material, including photographs without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Selma Jeevanjee and Selma’s Table with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

137 thoughts on “Sweet Potato, Courgette and Paneer Baked Fritters

  1. They look sooo good. I’ve never cooked with paneer either. Only love it in Indian curries. I had it once in some vegetable fritters and creamy sauce, that was delicious as well. I would totally go for your version though, it does sound delicious and healthy! Thanks for sharing this great recipe, Selma! :)

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    • Tina, I don’t think that I have even had it in a curry so this was a new experience for me. I try and bake anything that should be fried as I really can’t cope with the mess and the smell. I even bake arancini – risotto balls…

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  2. Delicious fritters Selma. I’ve prepared some leftover ccoked vegies as fritter batter for tomorrow’s lunch, after reading your method, I intend to bake, rather than fry them. Thanks for the inspiration. BTW the lemon oil is ready to go, it’s delicious in a salad dressing

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sandra, I added the raw couscous to the mix to absorb any excess moisture and keep the fritters crunchy and it seems to have worked. Let me know what you think when you bake them. Yay for the lemon oil – it is rather lovely in a dressing!

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    • Thank you Pang! And congratulations on being featured with your beautiful golden bags! I know that you have posted a couple of new posts with flowers and I can’t wait to see them this weekend!!

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      • Foodgawker seems to like bright pics, while Tastespotting “artistically styled” pics. That’s what I think, Selma, but what do I know? I’ve only started all this in Feb (had no idea about them before!) and am still trying to figure out what it is that makes a photo acceptable and another unacceptable. It’s always a surprise to me one way or another. It’s good that you keep trying. :-)

        Liked by 1 person

        • Well, I can hardly believe it but they just accepted 2 photos – the fritters and the Lime Ice-Cream pie from last year! I was just about to give up on FG too! Don’t get many followers from these food photo sites though – just lots of views :(

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  4. Absolutely delightful, Selma! These look great. I have not used paneer before, but I think I mentioned to you that I did find it in the specialty market last week. I can’t wait to try these baked fritters. Courgettes are in season and I am up to my ears in them. :) Thank you for the recipe!

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    • Paneer is also quite easy to make – just google it and you will find so many sites including ktchn…Love courgettes – grated and dressed with a garlic lemon dressing with some mint – one of my faces for a bbq!

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    • I just decided to treat it as I would any hard cheese but also taking into account that it is a great flavour absorber. When we lived in Nairobi, everyone had a little outdoor set up, usually on the other side of the kitchen window with a single ring gas burner so that all the frying took place outside! So sensible…

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  5. What a grand idea Selma, and that’s quite amazing that you’ve managed to add paneer to these fritters. Does one handle with care because of the crumbly texture of the paneer when mixing? I like the dark brown bits, I would eat them first and crunch and munch. Lovely! I hope you’re enjoying Wimbledon, I hear Murray’s grunts as I am trying to visit the party and watch Wimbledon :). Happy weekend to you.

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    • I just used a fork to keep it light so that the fritters were not too compact. Really enjoying Wimbledon when I can catch it. For once we seem to be having – no. I am not going to mention anything about the wet stuff that falls from the sky…

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      • Ah, you’ve just answered my question there: I’ve never tried grating my paneer. It just didn’t look like it could take it. You’ve emboldened me to have a try now, thank you.

        If you’re looking for a recipe, just be aware that you might have to play with the ratio of milk to lemon juice. It seems to depend on the protein content of the milk (which the cows, the farmer and government regulations control).

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    • The lunch box is really very cute – I did wonder if my son would be embarrassed to produce it at the law firm where he was working but he seemed fine about it! Yes, give paneer a go – it;s really easy to use.

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  6. Selma, this looks delicious! I also wanted to let you know that my lemon oil has been sitting for almost a month now. I’ll let you know when I use it!! Have a wonderful weekend, and happy Fiesta Friday. :D

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    • Lori, I am so sorry for the late reply – your message went into spam -this seems to be happening a lot and with everyone so check yours from time to time. The fritters are rather delicious and really very healthy too as the cheese has a low fat content and baking them keeps the oil content down. x

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  7. This is a brilliant recipe, Selma! I really love paneer, but have only ever had it in the saucy kinds of dishes you described! I also love that you baked them instead of frying! I am doing more and more of that these days to eliminate excess oil! This is just lovely! :D

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    • Thanks Julianna! I bake/oven roast as much as I can. I even make risotto balls, egg and flour them and put them in the oven with a dribble of olive oil. It’s not quite the same as arancini but still tastes delicious!

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  8. Selma, these looks so fabulous! I can hear the crunch of those fritters all the way here :D I love paneer & have a recipe for making paneer on my blog if you wanna try it out. It is so versatile and delicious xx

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  9. So glad you posted this – my courgettes are growing and I needed something fun to make. I can’t believe how lovely and crispy these look from the oven. They look so good, in fact, I saw them last night before bed and woke up thinking about them! ~ sheri

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    • Thanks Patty – there is part of me that just wants to keep my IG for fun and not really blogging so I haven’t been using it to post many finished dishes or links to the blog post – I feel that FB and Twitter already take up so much time on top of the blog – feel slightly overwhelmed by all the social media options…how do you feel about it?

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      • I feel the exact same way! If you haven’t noticed, all of my IG pics are from my camera phone. I want to keep it fun and simple. That’s why almost all the pics are of Bailey and food! I feel overwhelmed keeping up with my projects, FB, and WP. And I don’t even have Twitter! :D

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        • You are such an amazing photographer that I didn’t even register that you were using your iPhone – but that is what IG is for…keep those Bailey photos coming; there isn’t a soul who hasn’t fallen for him!!

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          • Aww, that’s such a nice thing to say, Selma! I have a Samsung Galaxy and it can take decent pictures, depending on the lighting! My goal this summer has been to stay relaxed and low key. I have a habit of getting worked up and too intense about everything I do, so I’m trying to find the middle road. Wish me luck because I’m pretty black and white about things. Either I’m all in, or I want nothing to do with it! Hah!

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            • But that is why you are so good at what you do – whether it is teaching or cooking/baking, food styling. that amazing Macro stuff or your photography – you care and it shows. It’s good to relax a little though and only you know when the time for that is!! xx

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              • Selma, you’re making my day. <3 Sometimes I run myself too ragged and I'm learning to slow down. For example, last week I received an email from a local parks and recreation department asking me to become a photography instructor for them. Even though I want to, I know I shouldn't given that I already teach full time, plus I have a part time photography teaching job now as well. I thought maybe I could squeeze it in on the weekends, but I know I'd be utterly exhausted!

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  10. Hello, Selma. Just thought I’d report back on the fritters. They were really delicious, though I could not get paneer in Much Wenlock. I substituted with Delamere’s hard goat’s cheese which comes from Cheshire. (I think there’s a connection with the Kenya Delameres).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Tish. Thanks so much for trying them – I am so pleased that you liked them. How interesting about the Delamere cheese connection with Kenya – I must try and find out more about them now!

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  11. Welcome to Fiesta Friday, Selma! Oh wow, what a wonderful dish of fritters you have brought to our table! I think I’m in love with them, they look so, SO delicious! I’ve heard of Paneer through Dimple…but have never tried it. You said that it comes from boiling the milk with lemon juice…and I’m almost thinking that is how we make cheese curds. I’m wondering if its the same as cheese curds, but with a prettier name? I’m printing this recipe… Thank you so much for sharing this with us!! <3

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    • Thanks Prudy x From what I gather, the milk has to have come to a boil then cooled off a little; whey drained off once the curds form and the curds then pressed to form a cohesive mass. According to one of the comments above, the amount of lemon juice one adds depends on the fat content in the milk…as much as I like to experiment, I don’t have the time at the moment so this one may be easier to buy since it is so readily available where I live in South London – aka ethnic food heaven!! Tish made the fritters over the weekend and subbed a hard goats cheese very successfully. Thanks again for hosting and hope you are having a marvellous time in the hills! Any more encounters with the tree-hugger (that term makes him less scary!) x

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