"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Sometimes you just have to be sneaky...

RMan is a definite meat eater.  If he had his way he would eat meat for breakfast, lunch and dinner - 7 days a week / 365 days a year.

And - eating veggies?

Nope - not interested.

So, I have to be sneaky.

I add chopped veggies to every soup - sometimes - in an effort to "hide them", they're even blitzed into a puree.

Chopped sauteed veggies even get transformed into an omlette filling.

Salads - he'll eat them, providing the ingredients are chopped really small - and, trust me, that can be tedious at times.  I mean salads are meant to be easy, aren't they?

I have just discovered that we have a new publication in South Africa.  It's called "go! Platteland" and it has some really fantastic articles.

As well as some recipes.

Paging through it I came across a recipe for Chickpea fritters.  By the time I had finished ready the ingredients, and method, I was salivating.  It is just my kind of recipe.

And, it would be a perfect way to serve hide RMan veggies :)

The recipe is as follows:

Chickpea fritters

Serves 4
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes

2 tablespoons (30ml) olive oil
1 grated carrot (I used 2 - 3 medium sized)
1 grated onion
2 garlic cloves
pinch salt
1/4 cup (60ml) fresh parsley - chopped finely
400gm cooked or tinned chickpeas
2 tablespoons (30ml) breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon (15ml) tahini
1 teaspoon (5ml) smoked paprika

1 teaspoon (5ml) cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, fennel seeds

Onions caramelising ready to have the grated
carrots added.  The carrot skins - why, they're
for the alpacas - they love carrots :)

Finely chopped fresh 
parsley is a breeze with
this handy little manual


Heat the oil and saute the carrots, onion and garlic until soft and caramelised. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Stir the parsley through the mixture and remove from the heat.

Pulse (or if using tinned merely squish through your fingers) the chickpeas and then mash with a fork until fine enough to form a pattie but not so fine as to be a puree. A granular texture is perfect.

Stir in the remaining ingredients and combine well.  Take a spoonful and shape into a pattie.  Shallow fry over a medium heat until cooked through and crisp-ish

Serve with a tomato chutney (or any chutney) or chilli sauce of your choice.
The chickpea fritters prior to being gently fried in
 a little oil
I didn't add the cumin - RMan doesn't like the taste, nor did I add the garlic and onion powder - I mean, c'mon, I've already added them as fresh ingredients...? But, I did add roughly 1½ inches of freshly chopped ginger and a sprinkling of fennel seeds.
Finely chopped home-grown tomatoes, red
 pepper and broccoli
I topped them off with some grated 6 month mature cheddar and the side dish of (finely) chopped tomatoes, red pepper and broccoli complimented the meal. (And I got some extra veggies into RMan.  Because they were chopped small.)
Finally, a sprinkling of grated carrot - yum, t'was
The patties themselves are delicious on their own - perhaps a bit bland but that is my fault for not adding the optional flavourings, but the chutney / chilli sauce livens them up perfectly.  Hot, as in freshly cooked, or cold, as in leftovers (of which I have just partaken) confirms that they would also be good as cocktail bite sized pieces with a chilli dipping sauce.

RMan's comment was the fritters are almost like very fine minced meat, and yes, he would eat them again...  And, no, he doesn't know that he consumed carrots, chickpeas, parsley or tahini.  Nor broccoli :)

Another plan that works!!

RMan and I had the above for dinner on Wednesday night.  Last night we had some neighbours round for a cold tapas type meal and I made bite sized portions.  Consensus - delicious :)


DFW said...

Dani, Those look & sound delicious. I love hummus so I think these would be great to try.

Dani said...

DFW - I love tahini and chickpeas and carrots :) Don't forget the chutney or chilli sauce though. It does a certain je ne sais quois to the overall taste

Tania @ Out Back said...

What is it with men and veggies? My man eats them no problems, but if I don't serve them with meat, does he whinge.

I am trying to incorporate some vegetarian meals into our menu. I made a very nice vegetarian stuffed zucchini the other night for tea. Hubby ate it all and his only comment on the taste was "its okay"...Okay! It was delicious! I am going to keep eating vegetarian myself, there are so many recipes available at our fingertips.

Hope you get rain soon Dani,


Dani said...

Tania - Aren't men funny!? Veggies often taste so much better than meat / chicken - especially if they're freshly harvested. There is absolutely no comparison between a shop bought tomato and a home grown one.

Personally I love veggies, and, by hook or by crook, RMan is gonna have some healthy greens in his diet LOL

Harry Flashman said...

I like some vegetables, but I like them to be side dishes to beef or chicken. Sometimes my wife makes salad but I like to put bacon on mine.

Shrimpton and Perfect said...

Great recipe. I'm always looking for some more veggie inspiration.


kymber said...

Dani - you can use that same recipe with white beans or navy beans as well. you can also do potatoe fritters, zuchinni fritters or carrot fritters too! i love fritters around here and throw in whatever veg is available. during the summer we eat a lot of zuchinni fritters but my absolute fave is fresh green onion, carrots and zuchinni, all from the garden - yummeh! but i've yet to meet a potatoe fritter that i didn't slather in sour cream and shove down into my belly without chewing - bahahahah! you can also play around with different fresh herbs like summer savoury, thyme or rosemary, etc. anyway, your meal looks absolutely delicious! i love chickpea fritters! oh heck - i love all kinds of fritters!

your friend,

Frugal in Derbyshire said...

Nice recipe Dani. I make something similar with red lentils.
I used blitzed veggies in soups and sauces, which I hide in pasta dishes etc. My grandson, who hates veggies eats such dishes with relish and has no idea what he is eating.

Quinn said...

Those sounds delicious, Dani - and I'm interested in the comments about using beans instead of chickpeas. Must try!

Dani said...

Harry - You sound exactly like RMan... ;)

Dani said...

Jean - Me too LOL Glad to have been of assistance :)

Dani said...

kymber - Thaks - that's good to know. Canneli beans I have in stock too, and veg aplently in the garden lol

Dani said...

FiD - Sounds like we're two of a kind ;)

Dani said...

Quinn - You and me too :) One of the things I love about blogging is getting so much welcome advice :)

Bill said...

I used to be like that too. My veggie-loving (and now vegetarian) wife began her plot to change me by starting to substitute turkey for red meat in certain recipes. Over time the turkey became eggplant or kale. These days I still eat meat but far less than I once did. I could easily become vegetarian, and it's been many years since I ate any meat that didn't come off this farm. So I'm living proof that tastes can change. :)

Dani said...

Bill - Turkey is mainly available here only at Christmas time. But, I'm so glad to hear that tastes can change - there's hope for RMan then...? ;)

Leigh said...

Being married to a meat love myself, I can relate! I think the more we eat real foods, the more our tastes change. After processing much of our own meat, Dan still likes it but is much more willing to use it as a flavoring than the mandatory main course.

Dani said...

Leigh - I can only hope that RMan gets to the point of using meat as a flavouring rather than the main ingredient lol I don;t know how long I'll have to wait though...

Chickpea said...

Just my sort of food! The bearded one wouldn't even try them though, drives me mad!

Dani said...

Chickpea - I was suprised that RMan liked them - perhaps his taste is changing slightly. Perhaps...?

Why not try serving them to the bearded pone together with strips of fried bacon?

Cherie said...

Sounds delicious! As far as sneaking in vegetables, have you looked into vegetable powders? I dehydrated some vegetables this past summer and turned some of my tomatoes into powder; I'm considering doing that with mixed vegetables to boost the nutrition of foods.

Dani said...

Cherie - I have also made tomato powder in the past, and am making more today LOL

Hadn't thought of mixed veggie powder though - thanks :)