Lemony Smashed Potatoes with Okra, Tomato, and Purslane

or……what Annie found at the farmer’s market this week. Minus the lemons, duh. Those came from the grocery store.

Smashed Potatoes with summer produce

What I really wanted to make this week was this dish, minus the potatoes and add squash blossoms. But nobody at the farmer’s market had squash blossoms, and the German butterball potatoes just looked too good to pass up. I ended up loving my choice because it was hearty and easy and cheap and I didn’t have to stand over the burner sauteeing squash blossoms. I’m not ruling out those big orange flowers for future posts, though.

The folks at the market also had some nice purslane. I’ve been foraging my own wild purslane, and it’s delicious. But the farm-grown greens are even better. Sweeter and lemony and meatier. I usually eat purslane sauteed with a little garlic and onion, but the farm-grown stuff is good raw. Also, sauteed purslane looses its color in like five seconds after it hits the pan and I like my food bright. I’ll still eat the foraged kind because it’s free and plentiful, but for this recipe, I used the farmed shoots.

smashed potatoes with summer produce

I was super excited for the okra because I haven’t had any this summer. I just love how the little seeds pop in your mouth when you bite in.  This is kind of like fried okra, only not fried. I used aquafaba to get the breading to stick to the okra. Just be sure to shake off excess moisture, or the breading will get soggy even after baking. Yuck.

The guy at the potato stand had three different kinds of midsummer tubers, and I had the hardest time choosing. Finally I decided on the German butterballs because the dude said they got the best golden crust when roasting. In truth, they were a little mealier than I like, but not by much. Little viking potatoes or red bliss or whatever small potato you can find will work just fine.

Smashed Potatoes with Summer Produce

Lemony Smashed Potatoes with Okra, Tomato, and Purslane

This recipe calls for coconut oil, but you can certainly substitute olive oil if you wish. For an extra golden crisp, drizzle a little bit more oil over the lemon coating.

Ingredients

  • 18-20 German Butterball potatoes
  • 8 oz multicolored cherry tomatoes
  • 12 oz of fresh okra
  • 1 cup of purslane leaves
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp of coconut oil, plus a little more
  • 2 tsp lemon zest
  • 2 tsp microplane-grated garlic
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • Okra breading
  • 2 1/2 cups of corn Chex or generic equivalent
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • aquafaba from 1 can of chickpeas

Instructions

  1. Scrub the potatoes and boil them in salted water (uncovered) over high heat until the yield to a fork -- about 15-20 min.
  2. Combine the lemon juice, the coconut oil, the lemon zest, the garlic, the salt and the pepper. Set aside.
  3. Cut the stem and the tip off the okra and slice in half lengthwise. Set aside.
  4. Cut the tomatoes in half or quarters.
  5. Place the corn cereal in a blender and pulverize. Combine with the salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Set aside.
  6. Preheat the oven to 450 and grease 2 pans with coconut oil
  7. Once the potatoes are done boiling, allow them to cool. Quarter the larger ones (so you get more "smashed" surface area) and then place them on one of the pans. Smash flat with a cup.
  8. Carefully pour the lemon mix over top of the potatoes.
  9. Bake the potatoes for 25 minutes, until nice and golden. Sprinkle with more salt the second they come out of the oven.
  10. While the potatoes are roasting, dip the prepared okra in the aquafaba, shake off excess, and roll in breading. Place them on the second pan. Put them in the oven 10 minutes after you've started the potatoes, but remove them at the same time. (okra bakes for 15 minutes)
  11. Combine the orka and potatoes in a big serving dish. Toss in the tomatoes and purslane leaves.
  12. Serve right away, with lots of love.
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lemony smashed potatoes with summer produce easy cheap vegan

Amazing Vegan Chickpea Fritters

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In the summer, I often find myself happily overwhelmed by all the fresh-from-the-dirt produce. Sometimes I eat so much green, juicy stuff that I fail to consume anything else.

Which at the end of the day, leaves me peckish and making bad choices. I spiral down into the chip bag, or the chocolate chip bag, or deep into the freezer for something frozen and fatty.

Clearly there needs to be a middle ground, and that’s where these come in. These have a lot of summer flavor, but are so very hearty. They were inspired by one of Jason’s favorite sandwiches, the pan bagnat. Of course, at the end of my experimenting, it only had a few of the elements of that sandwich left. But damn, these were so freaking tasty– listen to this.  Fresh basil. SUMMER TOMATOES. purple onions, creamy avocado. Just the best kinds stuff.

You start out with smashing up some chickpeas with a fork.

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Do not use a blender, okay? The coarse chickpeas give these so much texture.  Then add in some onions and avocado and bright basil.

And of course you need some summer tomatoes.

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You mix them up together with the basil and onions and avocado and some lemon zest. As a binder, you use aquafaba and oats…it works just like an egg would. It holds everything together and when it hits the pan it creates a golden crispy crust on each fritter. Perfect.

These taste awesome on their own with a little lemon juice and salt, or with (gasp) ketchup, or in a taco, or over a salad, or whatever the heck strikes your fancy.

 

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Amazing Vegan Chickpea Fritters

Yield: 18-22 fritters

i made a patty mold out of an pop can, to allow the patties to form nicer circles. I used tin snips to cut the can (a cross section of the can), but a careful hand can also manage with plain scissors.

Ingredients

  • 1 can of chickpeas (keep the aquafaba!)
  • 1 avocado, finely diced
  • 2 cups basil (not packed)
  • 3/4 cup grape tomatoes (about 20 grape tomatoes)
  • 1/2 cup finely diced purple onion
  • 2/3 cup aquafaba
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats, ground to flour
  • 1 tsp micropane-grated garlic
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 2 tbsp flax meal
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • just a little lemon juice
  • about 3 tbsp coconut oil

Instructions

  1. Drizzle the avocado with just a tad of lemon juice
  2. Smash up the chickpeas with a fork.
  3. Shred up the basil with scissors.
  4. Combine the chickpeas, the basil, the onion, the tomato, and the avocado. Be careful not to smash the avocado. This is important because they create wonderful creamy pockets.
  5. Combine the aquafaba, the oat flour, the garlic, the flax meal, the lemon zest, and the salt. Let it rest a bit to allow the oats to soak up the liquid some.
  6. Carefully stir the aquafaba mix into the chickpea mix. Make sure to distribute the aquabafa mix evenly, as this is what will bind the patties together.
  7. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add 3/4 tbsp coconut oil. Allow oil to warm.
  8. Scoop 2 tbsp worth of mix into pan and smash lightly to form a patty. Repeat and repeat.
  9. Allow patties to cook for 4 minutes on each side, then remove to paper towel to drain.
  10. Continue until mix is gone, working in batches of about 5 -6 (5-6 patties at a time in the pan, replenishing oil as needed. I only used 3 tbsp of oil for the whole recipe)
  11. Serve hot with a little more lemon juice and salt. Also makes great tacos.
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