Akara - Nigerian Black Eyed Pea Fritters, adapted from epicurious.com
I don't think there is any food in Open City. Nothing at all that inspired me to make a dish. BUT, because I knew nothing about Nigerian food and Julian was Nigerian, I thought this is the perfect opportunity to make something Nigerian. I found these fritters partly because the recipe did not have ingredients that may be hard to find. They came together quickly and should be eaten immediately after cooking. If you let them sit they are just oily sponges. Word of warning please be careful handling the habaneros. I would use gloves if you have them. Wash your hands thorough after touching them. If you have a lingering burning sensation I hear that rubbing oil on it will ease the burn.
2 cups dried black eyed peas, soaked overnight in water
2 red bell peppers, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped
1 teaspoon minced fresh habanero chile (with seeds)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup vegetable or peanut oil
1/2 to 1 teaspoon dried shrimp (optional), ground [i substituted some Thai fish sauce]
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon minced fresh habanero chile (with seeds)
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons salt
6 to 8 tablespoons water
Vegetable or peanut oil for frying.
- Drain peas and set aside.
- To make sauce, combine the pepper, tomato, onion, chile and salt in a food processor and processor until pureed.
- Heat oil in a large skillet, add the pepper mixture and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the dried shrimp or fish sauce and cook for 3 -4 more minutes, set aside.
- To make fritters, add the peas, the chile and the onion to the bowl of a food processor and process until a paste - smooth with some little bits.
- Add the eggs and pulse a few times.
- Add the water and pulse until fluffy.
- Stir in salt.
- Heat oil in a dutch oven until it is 375 degrees.
- Using two spoons drop about 2 tablespoon sized fritters into the hot oil (carefully).
- Fry until well browned on each side, about 2 - 4 minutes a side.
- Drain on a paper towel and serve immediately with the pepper sauce.