I’ve got a fried food alternative you must try. Have you ever had corn fritters? I hadn’t until a few months ago, when I spotted them on the “small plates” menu at Cheesecake Factory. When I asked what they were…I was basically told I’d be ordering fried balls of corn. SOLD. These little fritters melted in my mouth, and made it very hard to not polish off the entire plate by myself. Thankfully, the others liked them just as much, so I had share!
I visited the Cheesecake Factory again last week, and begged the table to order them as an appetizer. They were just as delicious, but are quite an indulgent appetizer. I wanted to try and recreate a healthier version of these decadent treats. After browsing through my favorite recipe sites, I was sold on one recipe in particular: Corn and Parsnip Cakes. These are simple, nutritious, and delicious, no frying involved! Plus, this one recipe incorporates two vegetables into one side dish…perfection!
Parsnips are one of my favorite vegetables. I refer to them as the carrot’s sister. Similar in look and shape, just paler in color, and sweeter in taste. (kind of sounds like my twin sister Kimmie and I). Haha! The parsnips added additional sweetness to the corn-cake. Due to my massive sweet tooth, I couldn’t help but taste the batter. Don’t judge. A good cook always tastes! Plus, great batter=a great dish. You’ll feel like you’ll indulging…while eating your vegetables.
Corn and Parsnip Cakes
1 cup chopped parsnip
1 (15 1/4-ounce) can whole-kernel corn, drained
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup skim milk
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs, lightly beaten ( I used 1 egg, and ¼ cup egg beaters)
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives ( I didn’t have chives on hand, so I skipped chives).
1 tablespoon butter, divided
1)Cook parsnip in boiling water 12 minutes or until very tender; drain. Cool to room temperature.
2) Place corn in a food processor; pulse 3 to 4 times or until chopped. Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Add parsnip, flour, and next 4 ingredients (flour through eggs). Pulse 3 to 4 times or until combined. Stir in chives(or other spices).
3)Heat 1 teaspoon butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Drop batter by heaping tablespoonfuls to form 6 cakes. ( I used my mini icecream scooper—totally worth the $6 at T.J. Maxx!) Cook 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Repeat procedure with remaining butter and batter.
These taste best hot off the frying pan, but I reheated a few cakes the next day at 450 degrees, and they were just as good! After enjoying a few of the cakes, my one wish was that there were more chunks of corn and parsnip in each bite. The next time I make these, I’m going to stick to the directions and only pulse the ingredients 3 to 4 times in the food processor to maintain the chunkiness. I was concerned whether or not everything was blended, so I went over-board with the mixing.
The corn and parsnip cakes may taste indulgent, but this is lightened-up comfort food at it’s finest. On that note, I’m going to eat round 2 of the cakes for my dessert…it doesn’t count since they’re vegetables, right?