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Cauliflower, bacon and cheese fritters

A new take on cauliflower cheese, souped up with bacon and turned into tasty fritters. They’re a great way to kick off a dinner party or drinks.

By Alice Storey
  • Serves 24
  • 35 mins preparation
  • 1 hr 10 mins cooking
Cauliflower, bacon and cheese fritters
Cauliflower, bacon and cheese fritters

Ingredients

  • 400 gm cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 3 rashers streaky bacon, rind removed, finely chopped
  • 200 ml milk
  • 60 gm butter, diced
  • 90 gm plain flour
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 120 gm vintage cheddar, coarsely grated, plus extra, finely grated, to serve
  • 2 tbsp chives, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika, plus extra to serve
  • Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • Finely grated rind of 1 lemon, plus lemon wedges to serve

Method

Main
  • 1
    Preheat oven to 200C. Toss cauliflower with oil and thyme, season to taste and roast, turning occasionally, until golden (35-45 minutes). Cool.
  • 2
    Fry bacon in a frying pan over medium heat until crisp (4-5 minutes). Drain on paper towels.
  • 3
    Combine milk, butter and a pinch of salt in a saucepan over low heat and bring to a simmer. Whisk in flour and stir until mixture pulls away from the sides of the pan (1-2 minutes). Cool for 5 minutes, then add eggs one at a time, beating well to combine between additions. Cover directly with plastic wrap and cool completely, then stir in cauliflower, bacon, cheese, chives and paprika.
  • 4
    Heat vegetable oil in a deep-fryer or deep saucepan to 170C, then deep-fry heaped tablespoonfuls of mixture, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked through (4-5 minutes; be careful, hot oil will spit). Drain on paper towels, then transfer to a serving platter. Scatter with extra cheese, lemon rind, paprika and sea salt and serve with lemon wedges.

Notes

Drink Suggestion: Wine suggestion Yeasty dry sparkling chardonnay. Drink suggestion by Max Allen