Damned zucchinis. They made me do this. These were damned good though. This recipe was developed solely out of necessity to use the mega number of zucchini we have these days. It was a cooler day, so I wasn’t concerned about heating up our oven to cook these, but after the first batch, we decided they were much better lightly fried on the stove top. They get a much better crisp which is so good with the textures and flavors of the tomato avocado confetti. The hatch peppers were a brilliant addition to the fritter, but if you don’t have hatch peppers, you can use any other grilled pepper. This makes a big batch. If you don’t eat all of them, they freeze really well. Please see Cook’s Notes at the bottom for other tips on cooking these fritters.
Makes 20 palm-sized fritters
- 3 C organic zucchini, skin on, shredded
- 1 T salt, plus more for batter
- 4 large hatch peppers, roasted, seeded and chopped (roasting tips at bottom of page)
- 2 T jalapeno, minced (optional)
- 1 C onion, shredded
- 1 T garlic, minced
- 1 T onion powder
- 2 large organic eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 C sharp white cheddar, shredded
- 1/2 C panko
- 1/2 C corn meal
- 1/2 C all purpose flour
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- Extra virgin olive oil for frying
- Tomato Avocado Confetti (recipe below)
- Sour cream or creme fraiche (optional)
In a large mixing bowl, add your shredded zucchini and 1 tablespoon salt. Mix and set aside. In another large mixing bowl, add your hatch peppers, jalapeño, onion, garlic, onion powder, eggs and cheese. Mix well and set aside. After about 15 minutes, take one cup of your salted zucchini, wrap in a clean tea towel and over your sink, squeeze all the liquid out. It takes several squeezes! Add squeezed zucchini to your hatch pepper mixture. Do the same for the remaining 2 cups of zucchini. Mix all ingredients again. Add your panko, corn meal, flour, salt and pepper and mix well, making sure to not have any globs of flour. Globs is a cooking term isn’t it? Once everything is all mixed, grab a large non-stick saute pan or cast iron pan and on medium heat, add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Once oil is hot, add zucchini mixture in heaping tablespoon portions (ours were about two tablespoons). Flatten with the back of a fork and saute for about 4 minutes per side. They should be golden brown and crisp on both sides. Put cooked fritters on a sheet pan in a warm oven and repeat cooking process with remaining zucchini mixture. Present fritters on a serving platter and top with tomato avocado confetti and a small dish of creme fraiche or sour cream on the side. Fritters are good warm or cold.
Tomato Avocado Confetti
- 1 C diced heirloom tomato
- 1 C diced avocado
- 1/2 C diced red or sweet white onion
- 1/4 C fresh organic cilantro, chopped
- 1 tsp fresh lime zest
- 1 tsp lime juice
- 1/2 tsp salt
- pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients, place in small bowl in fridge until ready to serve
There’s no way I ever want to heat up my oven in the summer, so we roasted our hatch peppers on our grill. You can roast on a sheet pan under your broiler to get the same blistering and the flavor is just as delicious. Almost. Grill peppers until they blister and skin starts to turn black. It takes about 7 – 8 minutes per side. Once completely roasted, transfer to a paper bag (seal the top) or bowl with a lid for about 15 minutes. This process helps steam the skins from the flesh. Once cooled and easy to handle, peel the skin from the flesh, remove seeds with a spoon or your fingers. Don’t rinse the seeds from the flesh because you lose some of the roasted flavors by doing so. At this point you can use immediately, keep in sealed container for up to one week or freeze for up to 6 months.
It may seem like too much binder to have panko, corn meal and flour, but after testing this a couple of times, we liked this combination the best and it was necessary to hold up to the moisture of the hatch peppers, zucchini and cheese.
Substituting flour for almond or garbanzo bean flour is a simple adjustment for a gluten free version.
We didn’t depict this, but we did have some creme fraiche on hand so SOME OF US dolloped a bit of this on top of the fritters as well.
They are good for breakfast too! Our son had these as a foundation for his runny yolk eggs the next morning. Just sayin’