As you may recall, I received a donation from my mother a little over a week ago. Generous offerings from her aren’t normal sized to begin with but this one was, without a doubt, the most gargantuan gift of all. Left with a zucchini the size of a small (wait) big child, I had no choice but to chop, dice, slice, bake, broil, steam, and saute. Am I forgetting something? Well, only the most delicious technique of all; FRIED.
Maybe it’s not the healthiest of choices but my most recent (and possibly most delicious) zucchini exploration involved eggs, flour, olive oil and a good ‘ol frying session. There were a few other ingredients I decided to throw in there in order to spruce things up, like Panko Bread Crumbs for a crisp factor, but I didn’t stray too far from Smitten Kitchen’s Zucchini Fritters recipe, a very favorite food blog of mine. As usual, Smitten’s photos are slightly more appealing than my own so try not to stare too long.
Although I always encourage using your own techniques and avoiding stress by skipping ingredients that you don’t have in stock, it’s very crucial to ring out the zucchini. If there is too much water in the mixture, the zucchini won’t fry correctly and it especially won’t last for leftovers. A major perk of this recipe is the “do ahead” factor so it’d be a shame if they didn’t keep. You can store them chilled in the fridge for the better part of a week and/or frozen in a well-sealed package for months. When you’re ready to use them, simply spread them out on a tray in a 325 degree oven until they’re hot and crisp again.
Smitten Kitchen suggests whipping up a sour cream based dip as the topping but, as an Italian, I say nothing goes better than a good marinara (homemade of course). My European roots also shined through when I decided to sprinkle the just finished fritters with parmesan cheese. Give it a try and you won’t regret it. I think my Nonna would have to agree, too.
Zucchini Fritters1 pound (about 2 medium) zucchini
1 teaspoon coarse or Kosher salt, plus extra to taste
2 scallions, split lengthwise and sliced thin
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Olive or another oil of your choice, for frying
In a large bowl, toss zucchini with 1 teaspoon coarse salt and set aside for 10 minutes.
Wring out the zucchini in one of the following ways: pressing it against the holes of a colander with a wooden spoon to extract the water, squeezing out small handfuls at a time, or wrapping it up in a clean dishtowel or piece of cheese cloth and wringing away.
Return deflated mass of zucchini shreds to bowl and add a little more salt to taste.
Stir in scallions (I used a regular sweet onion here), egg and some freshly ground black pepper.
In a large heavy skillet heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat until shimmering.
Drop small bunches of the zucchini mixture onto the skillet a few at a time and lightly nudge them flat with the back of your spatula.
Cook the fritters over moderately high heat until the edges underneath are golden, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Flip the fritters and fry them on the other side until browned underneath again, about 2 to 3 minutes more.
Drain briefly on paper towels then transfer to baking sheet and then into the warm oven until needed.
Repeat process, keeping the pan well-oiled, with remaining batter.
Until Next Time,
Mandated Zucchini Master