Tamale Corn Fritter and Black Bean Cake with Avocado Cream and Pico de Gallo

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This corn fritter recipe has been in Executive Chef John Medall’s family for many years. “It has been a big hit at personal dinner parties as well as at major hotel and catering events,” he says. “The flavorful ingredients work wonderfully well together. This dish not only tastes good, but it’s healthy too.”

Tamale Corn Fritter and Black Bean Cake with Avocado Cream and Pico de Gallo
Serves 4

For fritter:

12 oz. prepared masa (available at Mexican markets)
4 Fresno chilies, roasted, peeled, seeded and rough chopped
1/4 c. softened, unsalted butter 
1/4 c. fresh roasted corn, kernels cut from cob
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix until well incorporated. Spread evenly across a baking sheet so the fritter is approximately 3/4 inches thick. Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes. With a 3-inch round cookie cutter, cut out four fritters. Refrigerate.

For bean cake:

4 c. cooked black beans, divided use
1/2 bunch cilantro, minced
1/2 c. canola oil 
1/2 red bell pepper, diced small 
1/2 yellow bell pepper, diced small
1/2 red onion, diced small
3 T. ground cumin
3 T. ground coriander
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
1/2 c. all-purpose or gluten-free flour 

In a mixing bowl, mash half of the beans. Add cilantro and oil until a loose paste forms. Sauté peppers and onion until soft. Add to bean paste. Add the remaining beans and spices and mix to incorporate. Add flour to form a tight cake.

For avocado cream:

1 large ripe avocado 
1 small Serrano chili
1/2 bunch cilantro 
2 T. lime juice
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
Small amount of heavy whipping cream

Incorporate all ingredients, except whipping cream, in a blender. Add some water to start mixture moving. When all ingredients are completely blended, add a touch of whipping cream to emulsify. Set aside.

For pico de gallo:

2 Roma tomatoes, diced small
1/2 white onion, diced small
1/2 bunch cilantro 
1 T. lime juice 
1/2 Serrano chili, minced
Salt and pepper to taste

Toss all ingredients together and set aside.

For serving:

Crème fraîche 
Sprigs of cilantro 

To cook:

Heat a large sauté pan with a few tablespoons of canola oil until near smoking. Brown corn fritter on both sides and place in a preheated 425-degree oven for 4 minutes. Heat the bean cake in the pan. Place fritters and bean cake on paper towels to absorb excess oil. 

To serve:

Place one corn fritter and one bean cake side by side on each plate. Drizzle avocado cream and crème fraîche over each cake. Place an equal amount of pico de gallo on each cake and garnish with a cilantro sprig.


John Medall, Executive Chef
The Patio on Lamont Street
4445 Lamont St., Pacific Beach

Categories: Food & Drink