Sweet Onion & Corn Quinoa Fritters with Fresh Corn & Basil Salad

August 27, 2013
Author Notes

This recipe was born from an accidental over-purchase of fresh corn from the local farmstand. One's eyes do tend to grow bigger than one's stomach when standing before a mountain of locally grown corn. Tired of my fridge spilling out ears each time it was opened, I started cooking. I followed the same basic "frittering" principal used in zucchini-heavy years past: some shredded veggies (or in this case, corn), a grain (this time, quinoa), some seasonings, and a binder, and voila! Crispy, summery perfection. This recipe yields about 20 small fritters, enough to make a meal for four (or two, if you're really hungry), or appetizers for an even larger group. —Slow Club Cookery

Test Kitchen Notes

Between the bright basil, sweet paprika, and crispy quinoa, this recipe was a winner in our household. The corn and basil salad was the perfect complement to liven up the rich, spicy fritters. Depending on tastes, you have the option to drizzle or heap the fritter (like I did) with the fresh salad. Make sure to use a neutral oil for frying or else the flavor might overwhelm the quinoa. Even without the nutritional yeast, these vegan fritters were full of flavor. They're easy to make and small enough to consume by the handful! —Schylar Brock

  • Serves 4 to 6
  • Fresh Corn and Basil Salad.
  • 1 ear of fresh corn, shucked
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed torn basil
  • 1/4 cup finely minced sweet onion
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • Salt, black pepper, and crushed red pepper, to taste.
  • Quinoa Fritters with Sweet Onion, Fresh Corn and Basil
  • 1 ear of fresh corn, shucked
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed and well drained
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup minced sweet onion
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed minced fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons ground flax seeds
  • 6 tablespoons boiling water
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional but strongly encouraged)
  • Oil for frying: 2 to 3 tablespoons to start, plus more as needed.
In This Recipe
  1. Fresh Corn and Basil Salad.
  2. Carefully shave kernels from the ear of corn with a kitchen knife into a medium mixing bowl.
  3. Add basil and sweet onion.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together apple cider vinegar, lime juice, and olive oil.
  5. Pour dressing over corn mixture and toss to combine.
  6. Season with salt, black pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste.
  1. Quinoa Fritters with Sweet Onion, Fresh Corn and Basil
  2. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, toast rinsed quinoa for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until lightly browned and fragrant.
  3. Add two cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and let cook for 12 to 15 minutes until all liquid is absorbed.
  4. Allow cooked quinoa to cool completely before continuing with the recipe. The quinoa can easily be made a day ahead of time.
  5. In a small bowl, whisk together ground flax seeds and 6 tablespoons of boiling water. Set aside and allow to cool completely and thicken.
  6. Place a box grater over a bowl or dish and grate the ear of corn until all kernels are removed. You will wind up with about 1/3 cup of pulpy corn mash.
  7. In a large mixing bowl combine the cooled quinoa, grated corn, minced onion, basil, flour, nutritional yeast, salt, peppers, and paprika. Stir to combine, being careful not to over-mix.
  8. Add cooled flax mixture, then stir gently until combined. Season to taste.
  9. Using a tablespoon, scoop out dough and gently form it into balls using your hands. Roll in a little bit of flour, flatten into a patty and set in a single layer on a plate or baking sheet.
  10. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. In batches, add fritters and cook for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown and crispy. Add more oil as needed.
  11. Drain cooked fritters on paper towels. Serve with Corn and Basil Salad.

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