These Iranian fritters are herbaceous and delicious. They are a perfect snack at afternoon tea time, or make a great lunch with flatbreads and fresh salads.
We make our herby fritters with a chickpea flour base rather than eggs. With a little eno or baking soda for aeration, it is the perfect replacement for eggs in this type of recipe.The inspiration was Ottolenghi’s dish in his book Simple. They are very easy to make and utterly delicious. These fritters are a bit of a fridge raid – use whatever soft herbs you have to hand.
Herb and Walnut Fritters
40g dill, finely chopped
40g basil leaves, finely chopped
40g coriander leaves, finely chopped
1.5 tspn ground cumin
50g fresh breadcrumbs (about 2 slices, crusts left on if soft)
3 Tblspn barberries (from a Middle Eastern grocery)
25g walnut halves, lightly toasted and roughly chopped
1 cup besan (chickpea flour)
1 tspn eno or 0.5 tspn baking soda
sea salt, to taste
60ml sunflower oil or ghee, for frying
Place all the ingredients, apart from the oil, in a large bowl with sea salt to taste. Mix well with enough water to make a fritter batter (not too thick, not too thin, just gently flowing). Make sure everything is combined and set aside for 5 -10 minutes.
Put 1.5 Tblspn oil or ghee into a large non-stick pan and place on a medium high heat. Once hot, add about 1.5 – 2 Tblspn batter for each fritter to the pan. Do 4 fritters at a time, if you can.
Fry for 1–2 minutes on each side, until crisp and golden-brown. Transfer to a kitchen paper-lined plate and set aside while you continue with the remaining batter and oil.
Serve either warm or at room temperature with a green tahini sauce or yoghurt chilli sauce.
Yoghurt Chilli Sauce
Mix together a cup of Greek or Desi yoghurt, 2 – 3 Tblspn sweet chilli sauce, 2 – 3 Tblspn tahini paste and a little sea salt. Mix until smooth.