Vegan Thai corn fritters

Vegan Thai corn fritters

vegan thai corn fritters plated

My brother’s girlfriend, who grew up near a famous Polish ancient forest and is therefore a keen mushroom forager, has inspired me to have a go at mushroom foraging myself. I mean, it seems like a no-brainer as I:

  1. adore mushrooms
  2. am vegan so mushrooms are my go-to for meaty texture
  3. live in a fairly cold and wet climate, where mushrooms thrive

Duncan isn’t anywhere near as excited as me but he said he would tag along, and I even managed to convince two friends and their super cute wee daughter to come along on our first trip, which is amazing as my friend, Annette, hates mushrooms. But that’s Annette for you, she is always super enthusiastic and up for trying things. You gotta love her for that.

We are planning on going in about 2 weeks time, so I have some time to familiarise myself with the protocol and the most common edible species found in Somerset (which is the county where Bristol is situated). The stakes are high so I am not going to be ambitious and will only pick the ones that match the description 100%. I ordered myself a little mushroom picking pocket book and I’ll probably end up being super nerdy about it. I also joined an online group with many experienced foragers that are really helpful when it comes to helping newbies like myself identify their finds. I cannot wait to be able to cook with my first haul 🙂 .

Meanwhile, today’s recipe is the exact opposite to the mushroom fest that is hopefully coming. Vegan Thai corn fritters are my last hurrah to summer. I’ve been planning to make these for the blog since August but somehow never got around to it. Well, I thought, given that you can still get ears of corn in Bristol (plus they can be made with tinned corn too) it’s not too late to enjoy this vegan version of the popular Thai crowd pleaser.

They are really not difficult to make at all. They are a touch spicy with a fish-free red Thai curry paste and citrusy with Kaffir lime leaves, but if the latter are difficult to find add some fresh shredded Thai basil or coriander stalks instead. They are usually deep-fried, but you can also shallow fry them if that’s what you prefer. They make a great finger food or a perfect appetiser.

vegan thai corn fritters making

vegan thai corn fritters fried

vegan thai corn fritters

makes
15
PREP
15 min
COOKING
30 min
makes
15
PREPARATION
15 min
COOKING
30 min
INGREDIENTS
  • 1 tbsp ground up flax or chia seeds (1 flax egg)
  • 3 cups of corn kernels (fresh or from a can)
  • 1 heaped tbsp vegan-friendly* Thai red curry paste
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • approx. 115 g / ¾ cup rice flour
  • heaped ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • ¼ tsp white pepper
  • 2 fresh Makrut (aka Kaffir) lime leaves**, shredded finely
  • vegetable oil, for frying
  • Thai sweet chilli sauce, for serving
METHOD
  1. Mix the ground up flax seeds (I used golden flax seeds) with 3 tbsp of water in a small bowl. Place in the fridge until thickened, for at least about 20 minutes (but the longer the better).
  2. Cut the kernels off the cobs or drain them well if using tinned corn.
  3. Put half of the corn in a food processor together with the flax egg and all the remaining ingredients up until (but not including) the kaffir lime leaves. Process until you get a smooth batter.
  4. Transfer the batter to a mixing bowl. Add the other half of the corn kernels and finely shredded kaffir lime leaves and mix well.
  5. Place the mixture in the fridge for 30-60 minutes. If the mixture runs off the spoon after chilling, stir in an extra 1-2 spoons of rice flour to thicken.
  6. Heat up the oil in a small pan. Traditionally, these are deep-fried, but you could also shallow-fry them if you like, in which case only pour enough oil so that it reaches about 1.25 cm / 0.5″.
  7. For the deep-fried version, scoop the batter using two tablespoons and gently drop each fritter into the hot oil. If shallow frying, form the mixture into flattened patties instead. Take care not to overcrowd the pan as it will cause the oil temperature to drop too much and the fritters will come out greasy.
  8. If deep-frying, allow the fritters to resurface (they will drop to the bottom initially) and then keep on turning them around until they are browned on all sides. If shallow frying, simply flip them to the other side once the first side is done (about 2 minutes).
  9. Place the ready fritters on a plate lined with kitchen towels to absorb the extra moisture.
  10. Serve warm with a side of Thai sweet chilli sauce.

NOTES
*Please check the ingredients to ensure that your red Thai curry paste does not contain fish (fishsauce) or shrimp. I managed to find 3 vegan-friendly brands without looking very hard so I am sure you’ll be able to find some too. Here is a brand I recommend.

**A kind reader pointed out to me that the word Kaffir is a racial slur (here is one article explaining the issue) and therefore there is a motion to start calling these limes by their Thai name, Makrut. The trouble is that the former name is so entrenched that it is what you will find on the packaging, at least here in the UK, so I feel like I’ve had to include a reference to it or else you will not know what ingredient I’m talking about.

My recipe is adapted from this recipe.

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NUTRITIONAL INFO
calories
61
3%
sugars
2 g
2%
fats
1 g
1%
saturates
0 g
1%
proteins
2 g
3%
carbs
12 g
5%
*per fritter
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5.0
10 reviews, 32 comments
REVIEWS & QUESTIONS
Helen:
Where I live I cannot buy Kaffir lime leaves. What can I use to substitute with.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Helen,
    There is nothing really like it, but you could just skip or use Thai basil or coriander for different, yet still delicious, flavour. x Ania
CydD:
These sound wonderful---two questions:
1. We aren't vegan; can I use a real egg instead of chia etc?
2. Anyone tried these in an air fryer? Settings, please!
Thanks!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi,
    I myself am vegan and I only develop vegan recipes so yes, possibly but I have never tested these with an egg. I also don't have an air fryer so perhaps someone else will be able to answer your question. Ania
Delicious!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks so much, that's so lovely to hear! Ania
Athena:
Can I use dried kaffir lime leaves? There aren’t any Asian markets close to me and it seems like Amazon sells them fresh but it would take a couple weeks to get to me. I can buy dried ones to be delivered right away though.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Athena,
    I don't think they will quite work the same in this context - they are typically used in stews and their flavour is much less intense. I would just skip if you don't have any on hand and perhaps replace with some chopped coriander stalks (and some leaves) and a bit of lime zest may also be nice. Hope this helps! Ania
Bradley Taylor:
Love this recipe! By any chance do you know if they freeze well? Got some Thai red curry paste left over...
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Bradley,
    Thank you, that's lovely to hear! I have not tried freezing these but I don't see why it would't work. Ania
Snigdha:
Hi Ania,
The recipe looks yum.
Am I able to bake it instead of frying? If yes, can I use the recipe as is.
Many thanks.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Snigdha,
    I have not tried baking them so I cannot say for sure. I reckon they may be a bit dry as a result so you may want to add a touch more moisture and I would definitely brush the baking tray with a generous amount of oil. Hope that helps! Ania
Serena Patel:
Hi! If using corn from the cob do we need to cook it beforehand? Or do we just use the raw cornels cut from the cob?
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Serena,
    There is no need, they will cook in the hot oil while the fritters are being fried. Ania
Jeanie:
These are fantastic!! I will definitely be making them again!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Great to hear, Jeanie! And thanks for letting me know that you enjoyed them! Stay safe. x Ania
Claire:
So delicious! I used aquafaba instead of flax egg and they turned out beautifully.
Thank you :)
    Ania
    Ania:
    Great to hear, Claire! x Ania
Miche:
I wonder if I did a wrong step. The mixture was super crumbly and did not form a patty / stay as individual fritters.
Any suggestions?
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Miche,
    I assume you did use flax or chia egg as directed (that's what helps these bind) so my guess is that the batter needed a touch more water. Also, did you grind half of the kernels in your food processor? They are not meant to form a patty to begin with, the batter is like pancake batter when raw and it is the frying process that firms them up. They should not be crumbly. These are some ideas off the top of my head, but happy to trouble-shoot further if you give me more details. Ania
Padma:
Looks so yummy. Great recipe.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks!
Stu e skinner:
I’ve made these a couple of times now and love them.
Very easy to make and really tasty. Many thanks.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Great to hear and thank you for taking the time to review and rate this recipe! Ania
ARV:
Hi Ania, Is this brown rice flour?
    Ania
    Ania:
    I used regular rice flour, but brown rice flour would work well also, I imagine! x Ania
Ima:
Hi,
I’d just like to correct you on the lime leaves. They’re called kefir like the yogurt not kaffir, which mean non muslim or gentile.
Hope that helps coz i personally live in Indonesia where we use lots of those leaves & fruit rinds for flavoring.
    Ania
    Ania:
    That's interesting, Ima. Google seems to suggest that while keffir/kefir spelling exists, kaffir is much more common. What is the meaning of 'kefir' in this context? Ania
Devyn:
I used white flour instead of rice flour and it turned out beautifully! So good and tasty!!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Brilliant to hear, Devyn! Thanks for your lovely feedback. x Ania
Denise Muscat:
Hello I tried your carrot cake this weekend and so far it is the best carrot cake I ever made. I did not do the frosting on top, just added a few chopped walnuts before baking and a drizzle of honey when still warm from the oven. thank you.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks, Denise! I'm delighted to hear that!! :) Ania
Maggie:
Love these. But odd that the adverts in your page are all meat related!!! KFC and dettol to kill bacteria from raw chicken!!!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks Maggie! I am sorry but we little control over the nature of ads that are displayed, plus they often relate to the individual's browsing history too! We have asked for vegan-friendly adds only, of course, but sometimes mistakes happen and the ads are on such a quick rotation that by the time we intervene they change again. It's very frustrating to us too, but without advertising I would not be able to run this site full time. Hope you understand! Ania
2pots2cook:
Love the combination of chia and corn ! Thank you !
    Ania
    Ania:
    My pleasure!
Pavlina:
Absolutely delicious!! Also - i can confirm that it works well with aquafina instead of the flax egg :) Thank you for the inspiration, Ania! (While munching on the fritters, I am also marinating the jackfruit from your other recipe)
    Ania
    Ania:
    That's great to hear! That's awesome to know too, I didn't have enough time to test them with aquafaba, but I am glad to hear they it also works well. I shall amend the recipe with this - many thanks! Ania
Deanne Joseph:
Just made these ten minutes ago - they are GONE. My two kids and I are in Thai Corn Fritter utopia and cannot move off the couch now. Thank you for working your culinary magic and sharing with the world.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hahaha, aw, thanks! I'm so pleased to hear that you enjoyed them so much!! xx Ania
Elizabeth:
These look yummy! Do you think I could make with chickpea flour in lieu of the rice flour?
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks, Elizabeth! Yes, I am pretty sure that would work provided you do not mind chickpea flour's taste in these. Ania
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