The potager shed

The potager shed

Hi.

Welcome to my blog. This is just my personal garden and food diary. I’m a flexitarian, vegetarian at home, but more flexible when with friends. I’m trying to grow our own food so we leave a lighter footprint on this precious planet.

Over the past six years I have been transforming a one acre former vineyard on a steep hill into a garden. There are distinct areas; an 80m2 vegetable garden, a small orchard, a pond and a sunken path flanked by two long mixed borders.

We are in a small hamlet near Faugères in the Occitanie (formerly Languedoc) region of France. Our soil is rocky schist. Summer temperatures can reach 40℃ and in winter sink as low as -10℃. Water comes rarely but is diluvial when it does.

Lizzie

Cour-bhaji

Cour-bhaji

This evening we’re invited to a big birthday party. We’re taking a dish of cour-bhajis and some chilli dipping sauce. I really hope people enjoy them as much as we did while I was cooking. There were a lot more than in the photo but we couldn’t resist eating them as they came out of the fryer. It’s a recipe I made up so feel free to experiment with different spices.

All home grown, even the blue and brown eggs. These onions and courgettes aren’t huge so I’ve upped the quantity.

All home grown, even the blue and brown eggs. These onions and courgettes aren’t huge so I’ve upped the quantity.

Finger food - makes about 35. Deep fat fryer on 170℃

What’s in it?

2 large red chillies, chopped with seeds removed

2 sweet white onion, chopped

4 medium courgettes, grated

4 eggs

Sea salt

Ground pepper

275g self raising flour

2 tsps cumin seeds

1 tsp nigella seeds

Fresh coriander

Sweet chilli sauce for dipping

How’s it made?

30 minutes before

Grate the onion and courgette then leave in a colander for the excess juice to run out. Squeeze as much juice out as you can.

Then

Mix all the ingredients (except the coriander and chilli sauce) together.

IMG_1839.jpg

Once your oil is at 170℃ drop heaped teaspoons of the mixture into it. I find five or six bhajis on the go at the same time is perfect. Once they are floating, crisp and nutty golden brown take them out of the oil with a slotted spoon and drain for a brief while on some kitchen towel. Then transfer to a rack to keep their crispness.

Lip-smackingly good. Courgettes, chillies and onions from the garden. Bowl made by Ali Ballantyne.

Lip-smackingly good. Courgettes, chillies and onions from the garden. Bowl made by Ali Ballantyne.

To serve

Tear some coriander to decorate the top and serve with a bowl of sweet chill sauce for dipping into. Serve with a smacking of lips.

How do you rate this recipe?
Dry, dry, dry

Dry, dry, dry

Food security

Food security