Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Perfect Marriage: Mücver Fritters with Tzatziki Sauce

I've been having a wee-little craving for fritters, patties, latkes if you will.  Cauliflower and cumin fritters, quinoa patties and curried sweet potato latkes have already been featured on Sparrows and Spatulas.  Here is one more patty to add to the growing repertoire: zucchini fritters!  Zucchini, a summer squash, peaks between May and July, and I've seen them around the market recently.    
In Turkey these are called Mücver.  Across the Aegean Sea in Greece they are known by a more cumbersome name,  Kolokithokeftedes (say that five times fast!).  Wherever you are from and whatever you call them, these are simple to make and they are delicious.  The patties contain zucchini, flour, eggs, dill, salt, scallions and cheese.  They can be paired with roasted potatoes or a small salad.  You can also serve them as an appetizer.  Whenever we have a surplus of zucchinis in our CSA share I make these for dinner.  
Wanna make these babies pop?  Just top them with a dollop of tzatziki, which is a Greek yogurt sauce with cucumber, garlic, salt, pepper and sometimes dill and lemon juice (recipe follows).
My other favorite use for zucchini: zucchini and basil soup
Mücver Fritters (Adapted from Everyday Food by way of  Elise at Simply Recipes)
Yields about 8 medium-large fritters
Ingredients
1 lb of zucchini (about 2 medium sized), coarsely grated (I go with finely grated)
Kosher salt
Ground black pepper
1 large egg
2 scallions, finely chopped
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup grape seed oil or olive oil (I used a lot less. It's just for frying so I did a light pan fry.)
Optional: I add about 2-3 tablespoons of grumbled feta (I don't think the Turks put Feta in their fritters so this may change the patties to Kolokithokoftedes.)
Sour cream or plain yoghurt (I pair it with a Tzatziki Sauce, recipe follows)

Directions
1 Salt the zucchini with about 1 teaspoon of salt. Try to remove the excess moisture from the zucchini by either squeezing the liquid out with a potato ricer, or by squeezing with paper towels. (Original recipe: putting the zucchini in a colander set in the sink and let it drain for 10 minutes after salting it. I grate the zucchini, place it in a bowl and use a cheese cloth to remove excess moisture.)
2 Whisk egg in a large bowl; add the zucchini, flour, scallions, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Mix to combine well.  Add feta (optional but highly recommended by yours truly). 
3 Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook fritters in two batches. Drop six mounds of batter (2-3 Tbsp each) into the skillet. Flatten slightly. Cook, turning once, until browned, 4-6 minutes on each side. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Sprinkle with salt. Repeat with remaining batter.
Serve immediately, with sour cream or plain yogurt on the side.  
My preference: Whip up some tzatziki and use some seasonal cucumbers. 
Tzatziki: Greek Yogurt and Cucumber Sauce (Adapted from Kayln's Kitchen 
Yields about 3 1/2 cups. You can easily halve this recipe.
Ingredients
3 cups Greek Yogurt
juice of one lemon (about 3 T)
1 garlic clove, chopped
2 medium cucumbers, seeded and diced
about 1 T kosher salt for salting cucumbers
1 T finely chopped fresh dill 
Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
Directions
Peel cucumbers, then cut in half lengthwise and take a small spoon and scrape out seeds. Discard seeds. (If you use the small seedless or European cucumbers with few seeds, you can skip this step.) Slice cucumbers, then put in a colander, sprinkle on 1 T salt, and let stand for 30 minutes to draw out water. Drain well and wipe dry with paper towel. (I sometimes skip this step because I don't mind a tzatziki that is more liquidy.)


In food processor with steel blade, add cucumbers, garlic, lemon juice, dill, and a few grinds of black pepper. Process until well blended, then stir this mixture into the yogurt. Taste before adding any extra salt, then salt if needed. Place in refrigerator for at least two hours before serving so flavors can blend. (This resting time lets flavors meld together.)

This will keep for a few days or more in the refrigerator, but you will need to drain off any water and stir each time you use it.
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On a totally unrelated note, look what started to sprout this morning! My herb garden is starting to come together... albeit slowly...
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1 comment:

  1. Kat L of Cooking Inside the BoxMay 20, 2011 at 5:22 PM

    I miss your zucchini and basil soup! It is soooo good.

    ReplyDelete