Coconut Corn Fritters with Chipotle Cilantro Sauce.
These tasty little coconut corn fritters are packed with chili roasted corn, coconut flakes, green chilies, chipotle peppers, and scallions, fried in coconut oil. Dipped in a super quick dump-everything-in-the-bowl-and-stir chipotle cilantro sauce, these appetizers are so tasty you may not even need a main dish.
As I write this, it's 14 degrees outside and snowing. I have very warm slippers on my feet, a sweater over my sweatshirt, and I'm still cold. And yet, these little coconut corn fritters with their spicy dipping sauce are making me feel like I'm poolside under a palm tree, sun shining on my face, Pina Colada at my fingertips.
I'm sure coconut corn fritters actually taste better on a tropical beach (how could they not?), but they sure go a long way towards warming up a cold, snowy winter day in Colorado. And, sometimes you've just got to take what you can get.
I know for sure that I am going to make these in the summer when fresh corn is at its peak. But, one of the many lovely things about living in the 21st century is that frozen corn is nearly just as good as fresh and available all year round, meaning we can all eat corn fritters in January. Hooray!
The trick is to roast the corn with some coconut oil and Tajiin seasoning (or chili powder) before wrapping the tender kernels up in fritter batter. Roasting cooks the corn while infusing it with chili coconut flavor, adding another layer of YUM to simple corn fritters.
Used in this Recipe:
Having a fry thermometer is important enough to be mandatory when frying anything, in my opinion. The
temperature of the oil really does matter. If your oil is too hot, the outside of the fritters will burn and the inside will still be raw. If your oil is to cool, the fritters will absorb much to much oil and end up as a soggy, greasy mess.
A quick note about the dipping sauce for these coconut corn fritters:
This recipe makes quite a bit of sauce and when you first mix it up, you might be thinking that it's too much sauce. It probably won't be. Everyone you serve these to will likely dip the first bite of their fritter in a dainty, polite amount of sauce, but then the next bite will get completely dunked. So, you'll want to provide your guests with ample amounts of sauce in which to dunk (er, dip) their fritters.
For the Chipotle Cilantro Sauce:
- 1 ⅓ cup mayonnaise
- ⅔ cup sour cream
- 2 - 4 chipotle peppers in adobo (to taste), seeds removed and diced
- 2 tsp granulated sugar
- 1 tsp each: onion powder, ground cumin, garlic powder, chili powder
- Salt and pepper to taste (start with ½ tsp of each)
- 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 4 tsp freshly squeezed lime juice
For the Coconut Corn Fritters:
- 12 oz fresh or frozen corn
- 1 tbsp Coconut Oil melted
- 1 tbsp Tajin Seasoning, or mild chili powder
- salt and pepper
- 1 ¼ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp granulated sugar
- 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, seeds removed and diced
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup coconut milk
- 2 tbsp Coconut Oil, melted
- ½ cup thinly sliced scallions, white and light green parts only
- ½ cup canned or frozen green chilies, drained
- Approximately 2 cups Vegetable Oil or Coconut Oil, for frying (*See note)
Make the Chipotle Cilantro Sauce:
- Add all ingredients to a bowl and stir to mix. Taste and add more chipotle peppers, salt, pepper, or lime juice if desired. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Make the Coconut Corn Fritters:
- Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Toss corn with 1 tbsp melted coconut oil, Tajin seasoning, and 1 tsp each salt and pepper. Spread the kernels out onto a baking sheet and roast for 15-20 minutes, until tender. Remove from the oven, scoop the kernels into a bowl and let cool to room temperature.
- Put the coconut flakes into a food processor and pulse 3 or 4 times to break them up into small pieces. Dump the coconut flakes into a bowl and add the flour, baking powder, sugar, and ½ tsp each salt and pepper. Stir with a wire whisk to blend.
- In a separate large bowl, whisk the diced chipotle peppers, eggs, coconut milk, and 2 tbsp melted coconut oil to combine. Using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, stir in the corn, scallions, and green chilies. Add the dry ingredients and stir just to mix.
- Add 2 cups vegetable oil (or coconut oil) to a medium size saucepan and set it over high heat. (There should be about 3 inches of melted oil in the pan. Add more if necessary.) Heat the oil to 325 degrees. As you cook the fritters, do your best to adjust the burner temperature so that the oil stays as close to 325 as possible.
- Drop 1 tablespoon of batter into the hot oil and let it cook, turning it with tongs a couple of times, until it's deep golden brown on all sides. Remove from the oil to a plate lined with paper towels. Taste, and add more salt to the fritter batter if desired before continuing.
- Working in batches, cook the rest of the fritters: drop batter in tablespoon size portions into the hot oil, turning the fritters with metal tongs as they cook so that they brown evenly on all sides. The fritters are done when they are a deep golden. Let drain on a paper towel lined plate. Do not over crowd the pan.
Serve the fritters as soon after frying as possible with the chipotle cilantro sauce for dipping.
If you use coconut oil to fry these fritters: Coconut oil will start smoking at 350 degrees. So, do your best to keep the temperature of the oil as close to 325 degrees (F) as you can, which is the optimal temp for non-greasy crispy fritters that are cooked all the way through.