Sweet breakfast fritters flavoured with cinnamon and nutmeg. This Gluten-free, Dairy-free and Paleo recipe makes a good replacement for buttery pancakes.
This recipe is a real Saturday morning treat, which I make when I’m craving a stack of buttery pancakes drizzled with maple syrup. The warm spices and banana are enough to satisfy the sweetest tooth, but the smoked bacon stops any approach toward cloying, creating a classic salty-sweet combination. However, if you have a more savoury palate, then replace the banana, cinnamon, and nutmeg with half an onion (peeled and very finely chopped, then sauteed in 1 tablespoon of oil for 4 minutes, until translucent but not brown).
- 500g sweet potatoes (about 2 medium potatoes), peeled and grated
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 small ripe banana (120g), peeled
- 1 egg
- 3 tablespoons ground almonds
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 4 rashers smoked back bacon
- 1 – 2 tablespoons cooking oil (I used lard)
- drizzle of maple syrup
- Combine the sweet potato and salt in a large sieve over a bowl. Use your hands to mix in the salt. Leave for at least 15 minutes to allow the salt to draw out the water.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the cooking oil in a large, heavy-based frying pan over a medium-high heat. If using smoked bacon, then trim off the inedible hard rind using a pair of scissors. If using unsmoked bacon, then cut a few nicks into the fat on the outer edge (this will stop the bacon from contracting and scrunching up as it cooks). Fry until cooked to your liking, turning only once – about 5 minutes a side. Remove and place to drain on some kitchen towel, keeping warm.
- Meanwhile, crumble the banana into a bowl. Use the back of a fork to mash the banana into a smooth purée. In another bowl, combine the egg, ground almonds, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking soda, and whisk until smooth. Scrape the banana purée into the bowl containing the egg mixture and whisk until fully blended.
- Give the sweet potato a good hard squeeze in handfuls to wring out the water. You will need to do this for several minutes, until you have squeezed out as much water as possible. The more water your remove, the crispier the fritter will be.
- Pour in the egg and banana mixture, and use your hands to mix well. Divide the sweet potato mixture into four. Use your hands to shape into patties, squeezing them so they are tightly packed.
- If you managed to buy good quality dry-cured bacon, then it should not have released any water into the pan. Water is the enemy of crispiness. So if your bacon has released water during cooking, then drain the pan and wipe down with a bit of kitchen towel when cool enough to handle. Add more cooking oil.
- Ensure there is enough cooking oil in the pan to generously cover the bottom, adding more cooking oil if required. Place over a medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, gently lower in the patties with your hands. Use the back of a fish slice to press down and flatten the patties. Fry until a golden crust forms on the bottom – about 2 minutes a side. Use a fish slice to turn the patties, being gentle to avoid breaking up the patties. I find the best way to do this is to slide a fish slice under the patty, and place another fish slice / flat utensil on top to sandwich the patty. Quickly flip the patty, so that the cooked bottom of the patty is now facing up. Gently slide the patty back into the pan.
- Once cooked, remove from the pan. If the bacon needs re-heating, then return to the pan until warmed up. Serve hot, with a drizzle of maple syrup.