Holiday Apps: Leek Fritters w/ Smoked Salmon & Creme Fraiche

Since I am the only one who doesn't have an iPhone, when I say "apps" I mean appetizers, not an "app" for your phone. Old school lingo.

I know it's a bit early to be thinking about holiday apps, but Christmas and Hanukkah are right around the corner, and I am a planner. I will be posting a lot of holiday festive foods for the month of December, so buckle your seat belts, because by Jan. 2 the belts won't fit.

These excellent appetizers are from the vegetarian cookbook PLENTY, where else?

I added the creme fraiche and the smoked salmon to make them holiday appropriate and more elegant.

The original recipe makes 8 giant pancakes, but I made them smaller appetizer size, and got 16 out of the batter.

Plenty's Leek Fritters:

3 leeks (1 pound total, trimmed weight)
5 shallots, finely chopped
2/3 cup olive oil (1/3 cup for frying the leeks, and 1/3 cup for frying the fritters)
1 fresh red chili, seeded and sliced (I used chili flakes)
1/2 cup parsley, leaves and fine stalks, finely chopped
3/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg white
3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 egg
2/3 cup milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Cut the leeks into scant 1 inch thick slices. Saute the leeks and shallots in half the oil for about 15 minutes until soft. Transfer to a bowl and add the chili, parsley, spices, sugar and salt. Allow to cool.

Whisk the egg white to soft peaks and fold into the vegetables.

In another bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, whole egg, milk and butter to form a batter.
Gently mix the batter into the egg white/vegetable mixture.

Add a couple tablespoons of oil to a pan over medium heat. Spoon about half the vegetable mixture into the pan, making about 4 large fritters or 8 appetizer size. Fry them 2 to 3 minutes on each side until golden brown and crisp. Remove to paper towels and keep warm. Continue making the fritters adding more oil if needed.

I served them with a dollop of creme fraiche and a piece of smoked salmon, but here is the original recipe for the dipping sauce from the book.


1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1/2 cup sour cream
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup parsley leaves, chopped
2 cups cilantro leaves, chopped

whiz sauce in the food processor and serve on the side with the fritters.


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Claudia said…
It's not too early to think about holiday apps! I'm obsessing - so thank-you for solutions. No i-phone here - I have yet to figure out how to work my cell phone.
Lovely app Stacey. I know what you mean about the lingo. Personally I like old school and in this case, our apps taste better, oui?
The JR said…
I luv seeing all the chopped veg.
Susan..... said…
Make that two people who don't have an iPhone. Love this idea and was thinking of making a rosti to serve with smoked salmon and creme fraiche but this is a much better idea. Thanks for another great food idea.

StaceyEsq said…
Make that 3 people that don't have an iPhone! This is the most amazing idea for the first night of Channukah, when we'll be going to friends to celebrate. I think I'm going to refer to them as leek latkes (rather than fritters) for the children!
Ciao Chow Linda said…
I've been wanting to make those leek fritters of Ottolenghi since I saw his cookbook. Your salmon and creme fraiche topping is perfect for the holidays.
Joanne said…
Time to crack that favorite cookbook of mine open! I've been wanting to make this!
dm said…
I have a Blackberry and still don't know how to get apps.
Hanukkah is next week and still don't know what to make although my son said he'll do the first night at his home.
Potato latkes are a must though.
Don't even have a cell phone. No one to call in MT! Looked for smoked salmon today in the city - none of the nice thin stuff - but these look wonderful. Have to think of something else for the topper!
Oui, Chef said…
These look gorgeous and would be a great holiday nibble. Love your colorized photo, you clever girl.