One of my husband’s favourite anecdotes references the time I did a television camera course and as an exercise, shot a short film on our old allotment. It included me doing a piece-to-camera by appearing, like David Attenborough parting a curtain of bamboo, from the sweetcorn patch.
Yes, I still have the film. No, I’m not going to share it here. Leave me some tattered shreds of dignity. I’m still smarting from the time I accidentally gave my bloopers tape to our nephews and nieces. The jokes about my ’90s hairdo never seem to get old.
So, back to the kitchen garden. I love bog-standard corn fritters but sometimes you want a bit of fire in your belly and this spicy version works with roast chicken, gammon and ham or just with a pan full of good juicy sausages. Try griddled halloumi for a vegetarian alternative and add a tomato and pepper salsa for a crunchy, tangy contrast and a colour pop that will lift the dish.
Chilli Corn Fritters
Sweetcorn from five or six cobs (500g kernels)
2-3 chillies, to taste
2 eggs, yolks and whites separated
3 level tbsp plain flour
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
30g butter and and a small splash of vegetable oil
Strip the corn from the cobs and de-seed and chop the chillies. Mix with the flour, stir in the lightly beaten egg yolks and season to taste. Beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry and fold gently into the corn mixture.
Heat the butter and oil in a frying pan over a high heat. Drop in the batter, a heaped tablespoon at a time. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until browned on the bottom, 2-3 minutes.
Turn once and cook the second side. Don’t pat them down and don’t overcook them – they should be golden brown on the outside but fluffy and soft inside. Transfer to a heated plate lined with kitchen paper (or to your guests’ plates) and do the next batch. They’re best served straight away while they’re still puffed up.
We ate them with roast chicken and a tomato and pepper salsa, simply dressed with lime juice and fresh herbs.