We came back from Kelowna needless to say with a little vegetable market in the back of the Hummer. As if there is no food here in Calgary. My excuse was that the farmers market here was not going to be open until Thursday and I need to cook in the meantime, don’t I? Well, the veggies are here. I had to do something with the beautiful zucchini and summer squash while they were still fresh. I made a ribbon salad with some, sautéed some in olive oil and bread crumbs (recipe to be posted) and the last few made it into a zucchini-potato fritters (or cakes) that I just made this morning. I added the potatoes so the cakes have more substance and for the binding effect of the starch in the potatoes. One thing to keep in mind when working with zucchini is that it contains a lot of moisture. You need to allow some of it to drain off so grate it in advance and allow it to sit in a colander over a bowl for an hour or more (even overnight) to allow it to drain. Once drained, add the remaining ingredients and sauté the fritters in a little olive oil. The zucchini and potatoes can be prepared a day ahead without sacrificing quality. You can serve the cakes with sour cream, tzatziki, salsa, cheese sauce or even the mango salsa I made the other day. Give it a try.
6 small zucchini (or 3 medium)
1 tablespoon salt
4 small new poatoes
1/2 small onion, grated
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoon fresh mixed herbs (sage, thyme, marjoram etc.)
1/2 cup flour
1 cup fine bread crumbs
Grate the zucchini on a mandolin grater. Add a tablespoon of salt and mix with a spoon. Set grated zucchini in a sieve over a large bowl and let drain for about an hour. You can start this the day before and leave it to drain in the fridge, covered, overnight.
Steam the potatoes until they are cooked through. Let cool. You can cook the potatoes the day before and keep refrigerated.
When ready to proceed take the zucchini grating by the handful and squeeze remaining moisture out of them. Place in bowl.
Using a mandolin grater grate the potatoes onto the pile of zucchini and then add the minced onion. I sometimes rinse the raw onion and squeeze it dry with paper towels to get rid of the raw taste. You can do this or not, as you wish. Mix the zucchini, potatoes and onion together with a wooden spoon or a spatula.
Add salt and a few grindings of pepper to taste and then add the herbs and mix them in.
Add the eggs and mix them into the vegetables until well blended.
Add the flour in two additions, mixing well with a spoon or spatula.
Sprinkle the bread crumbs onto a baking sheet lined with foil (less dishes to wash this way).
With a regular size ice scream scoop, scoop out balls of the zucchini mixture and with wet hands form them into little cakes. Lay the cakes on the bread crumbs in the pan. Continue until you have used up all of the zucchini mixture.
Lightly press the cakes onto the bread crumbs and then turn them over to lightly coat the other side. You don’t need heavy coating so just a little bit of bread crumbs is enough.
Heat up a frying pan with a film of olive oil on the bottom. When hot lay a few zucchini cakes at a time in the hot pan and let cook until golden on the bottom. Turn over gently and cook until the other side is golden.
Continue with remaining cakes until they are all cooked. As they are cooked remove and let them drain on a paper towel. I cook it in very little oil so there isn’t much to drain.
Serve warm or at room temperature with one of the tzatziki below or sauces or condiments mentioned above.
2 cup greek yogurt
1 field cucumber, seeded and grated
1 teaspoon salt for draining cucumbers
Juice of 1/2 or 1 lemon
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
1 clove garlic, grated
Salt and pepper
Seed and grate the cucumber. Mix with the salt and let drain in a colander for 30 minutes. Discard water.
Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.