Guest-Worthy Recipe: Chef David Perez

Cauliflower Fritters With Dates And Pine Nuts

Who: Chef David Perez

Instagram: @elea_nyc

Chef Perez’s Guest-Worthy Recipe: Eléa’s “Kounoupidi Tiganites,” Cauliflower Fritters with dates and pine nuts

Why?

“What I like is that it is not something you would normally make at home but it will please a lot of people and it looks elegant. It’s also in peak season right now and it is a dish that is relatively easy to make, holds well uncooked, or can be made ahead of time and finished in a medium heat oven.”

Ingredients:

For the cauliflower

6 c cauliflower florets (steamed & chopped weight)

1/2 c Half & Half

1/4 c water

1 egg

1 1/4 all-purpose flour

1 Tbsp butter, melted and slightly cooled

2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp nutmeg

2/3 c Kefalogravirera

1 tsp thyme (minced)

2 tsp mint (minced)

2 Tbsp chopped parsley (chiffonade)

1/2 c black currants

1/2 c pine nuts

For the vinaigrette

5 small sprigs thyme

1/4 tsp black pepper

1/4 c honey

1/5 c white balsamic

30 Tbsp water

Bring to boil for 30 seconds and shut off, remove thyme

15 Tbsp olive oil

Pinch of salt

For the labneh

Greek yogurt

Nutmeg

Black pepper

White balsamic

Directions:

Steam cauliflower until fork-tender. Cover with ice in a colander and set aside to cool.

In a medium size bowl, beat the egg and whisk in the half & half until combined. Gradually add in the flour, spices, and salt, and continue whisking until a thick batter is achieved.

Add the herbs and butter and stir until combined. Set aside.

Chop the steamed cauliflower into bite-sized pieces.

Fold the cauliflower into the batter until well combined. Set aside.

Pour oil into a cast iron skillet until it’s about a quarter-inch high. Heat over medium-high heat.

Once the oil is warmed, add a spoonful of the batter (two tablespoons per fritter) to the pan in batches.

Turn the heat to medium-high and cook until golden brown, about three to four minutes per side.

Remove fritters with a spatula and place on a plate lined with c-fold paper towels.

Toast pine nuts until golden (325 F for 10-15 min)

Add (1/2 c) black currants; chopped parsley, mint, & Thyme (1/4 tsp) each, (1/2 c) toasted pine nuts, to a bowl and season with salt and white pepper.

Drizzle mix with vinaigrette.

Labneh as garnish (be generous).

By Zachary Weiss