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Jalapeno & Corn Fritters with Coriander Pesto


The recipe for these crispy golden morsels comes from a new cookbook whose authors say they want to dispel any preconceptions that vegan food is bland or boring.

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Shannon Martinez and Mo Wyse run Smith & Daughters restaurant in Melbourne’s Fitzroy, and have called their first book Smith & Daughters: A Cookbook (That Happens to be Vegan).

It features more than 80 vegan recipes with a Spanish twist, including main meals, “small plates”, salads, sweets, dressings and drinks.

The pair describe the recipe for Jalapeno and Corn Fritters as “moreish as”, saying they serve them with a coriander pesto in quantities of three or six at their restaurant.

People always, ALWAYS choose six. You’ll see why!”

Jalapeno & Corn Fritters

Serves 4–6


450g (3 cups) frozen corn kernels, defrosted
1 tablespoon no egg powder
2 ½ tablespoons sugar
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 corn cob, kernels stripped, or an extra 75g (½ cup) frozen corn kernels
1 jalapeno, finely diced (seeds removed for a milder taste)
3 tablespoons cornflour (cornstarch)
Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Coriander pesto (recipe below) or your favourite dipping sauce


Blend the defrosted corn, no egg powder, sugar and baking powder in a blender until you have a smooth puree. Transfer the mixture to a bowl.

Add the fresh or extra frozen corn kernels to the puree, along with the diced jalapeno and cornflour. Gently stir to combine, then allow the mixture to sit for at least 15 minutes.

Heat enough oil for deep-frying to 170C. To check the temperature of the oil, drop in a small spoonful of the batter. If it quickly rises to the surface, then you’re good to go.

To cook the fritters, use one soup spoon to scoop up the batter, then use another soup spoon to gently push the mixture off the spoon and into the oil.

Make sure there is enough room for them to move around a little in the oil.

The fritters will rise to the surface and begin to turn a golden brown. Flip the fritters over and cook the other side until crisp and golden all over – this should take about 2 minutes.

At the restaurant, we serve these with coriander pesto, but feel free to serve them with any aioli or salsa. They’re so good, they won’t last long anyhow, so make sure you have some dipping sauce ready or people will eat them straight out of the fryer.

Coriander Pesto

At the restaurant and deli, we make our pestos with roasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds) or sunflower seeds so they’re safe for our nut-allergy customers. If you want to use nuts (pine nuts/cashews, etc), go ahead.


1 bunch coriander (cilantro)
Small handful flat-leaf parsley
Small handful mint
1 green jalapeno
2 garlic cloves, peeled
30g (¼ cup) pepitas (pumpkin seeds), toasted
Juice of 1 lime
45g (¼ cup) capers
125ml (½ cup) vegetable oil


Place all of the ingredients except the oil in a food processor or blender and process on high speed until mashed up. Add a little drizzle of the oil to help get the mixture moving, if necessary.

With the motor running, slowly drizzle in the oil until incorporated and emulsified.

Recipes and photo from Smith & Daughters: A Cookbook (that happens to be vegan), by Shannon Martinez & Mo Wyse, published by Hardie Grant Books, RRP $48.

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