Although winter doesn’t officially start until December 21st, I feel like the first of December unofficially begins the winter season. Christmas is only a few short weeks away and most places in the country have already received their first dustings of snow. It’s time for sweaters, fires and cozy meals. But some of us happen to live in the desert where snow is nowhere in sight and we are still wearing our flip flops! I should say that I’m wearing pants and sweatshirts with those flip flops, but flip flops none the less.
I decided that these BBQ spaghetti squash and chickpea fritters are the perfect combination of flip flops and sweaters. I used a very seasonal winter squash in this recipe, but it also has some warmer weather BBQ flavors, and the dipping sauce is very reminiscent of your favorite summer coleslaw dressing. Everything goes together so nicely, and it is sure to warm you up while also taking you back to warmer days.
These fritters are so easy to make — you just throw all the ingredients into a bowl, mix them up and then spoon them into a hot pan. Within minutes you have warm, crispy fritters that are perfect for a light lunch or nice to just snack on during the day.
For the dipping sauce:
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise vegan mayo will work too
- 2 teaspoons water
- 1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon pure maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon celery seed
For the fritters:
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- olive oil for cooking the squash and pan-frying the fritters
- 3/4 teaspoon salt divided
- 1 15 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 large eggs whisked
- 1/4 cup flour all purpose or gluten-free
- 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- Place all of the dipping sauce ingredients into a small bowl and mix until combined. Set aside.
- Cut the spaghetti squash in half, scoop out the seeds and then use a metal spoon to scrape out the "meat" of the spaghetti squash. You should get about 3 cups. Place a large pan over medium heat and add 1 teaspoon of olive olive oil, the spaghetti squash and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook the spaghetti squash until tender, 10 minutes, and then let it cool for about 10 minutes. Once cooled, squeeze as much water as you can out of the spaghetti squash using a kitchen towel.
- In a large bowl, add the chickpeas and lightly mash them with a potato masher. Next, add the spaghetti squash, remaining salt, and all remaining ingredients for the fritters. Mix until everything is combined.
- Heat a large pan over medium heat and coat with about 2 teaspoons olive oil. Use a tablespoon to scoop the fitter mixture into the hot pan. Cook fritters about 2-3 minutes on each side, until golden brown and cooked through. Remove fitters from the pan and repeat with remaining batter until it's all been used.
- Serve fritters warm with dipping sauce.