Swiss Chard Fritters

I’ve got a plethora of silverbeet (aka swiss chard) in my garden at the moment. I planted quite a lot after the flooding rains last year when greens became incredibly expensive. Now greens are incredibly cheap at the shops and I’ve got a bumper crop of silver beet in the garden to try and eat my way through.

This recipe for swiss chard fritters is Turkish in origin and is from Jerusalem which is still one of my favourite Ottolenghi books. They are dense with green chlorophyll goodness and is an excellent way to use up a lot of silverbeet, an essential if you’re dealing with the boom and bust cycle of garden produce.

I’ve made these fritters for years and I don’t really follow the recipe anymore and really just go with how much silverbeet I have around. How much is 400grams of silverbeet about a bunch I guess, or ever much you want to pick from the garden. You can use different greens such as spinach but you need to use about 50 percent more spinach because it wilts down so much more. I use an aromatic spice mix like gram marsala or baharat instead of the nutmeg. The mix is meant to be fairly dense, add more flour if it looks too eggy or more egg if it is too dry. I often add more feta then the recipe calls for and you can mix and match on the fresh herbs but don’t stint on the fresh herbs because they add and extra green chlorophyll zing to the fritter.

These fritters go well with tomato and pomegranate salsa, any kind of Indian yogurt salad or some Pilpel garlic dip if you cant be bothered making anything. I made a Melissa Clarke garlicky beetroot horseradish dip for this batch and it was extremely good. The beetroot /silverbeet combo felt like a superfood match made in heaven. Leftovers are good in a sandwich or just straight as a snack. The mix keeps well in the fridge for a day, so you cook half the batch and fry up the rest of the mix the next day so the fritters are nice and fresh!

Swiss Chard fritters

Serves 4 as a starter

Adapted from Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi

  • 400g silverbeet leaves (white stalks removed)
  • 30g parsley
  • 20g coriander
  • 20g dill
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of grated nutmeg (or an aromatic spice blend garam masala or baharat)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed
  • 3 tablespoons plain flour
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 80g feta crumbled into small pieces
  • 60ml olive oil
  • salt and black pepper
  • 1 lemon cut into wedges
  1. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil, add silverbeet leaves and simmer for 3-5 minutes until silverbeet is nicely blanched. Drain leaves allow to cool and squeeze as much water as you can out of them. Place leave in a food processor with herbs, spices, flour, eggs, garlic a good pinch of salt and pepper to taste. Process until smooth, then gently stir feta through the mix.
  2. Pour a good splash of olive oil onto a medium sized frying pan and heat to medium high. Place a good heaped tablespoon of mixture onto the pan and flatten down until about 1cm high and 7cm round. Cook for about 2 minutes on each side until fritter is a nice golden brown. Drain on paper towel.
  3. Serve with lemon wedges and dip or salsa of your choice.

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