I realized this week that there is only one month left of my children’s summer vacation. It was a punch to the stomach. Only one month left to get out there and drink in the summer, to make memories. They are 7 and 5, and for anyone that has or has had children of these ages, you probably understand why I feel that these ages are perfect. They love to be around Radd and me, yet are independent enough to do things on their own. All the hassles of tiny babes and toddlers are gone and we’re left to enjoy these perfectly sweet, intelligent, and hilarious tiny human beings. Leaving the house is easy. I remember when it used to be such a production: diaper bags, extra clothes, baby food (in a cooler), etc. Life is so effortless right now and I want to bottle this up and keep it forever. Because it won’t be long before they’ll pick hanging out with their friends over being with us. I know change is on the horizon and I can’t stop it. I hate change– have I ever mentioned that before? I do. It’s just how I am wired.
But not only is school break about to end, I’m grappling with the realization that I have one month left of my thirties. A big (gulp) birthday is just around the corner. I wish I could be one of those people that welcomed it, but again, I hate change. So instead, I’m working on trying to embrace it as well as trying to enjoy the heck out of this next month. We’ll be doing the things I love– just more of them.
Wait. This is a food blog, right? Okay, enough of the existential wrangling. One of the things I’ll also be doing is tinkering in my kitchen, as I always do. Recently, I made these fantastic corn and zucchini fritters. If I’m being honest, I needed an acceptable way to eat the cilantro-mint chutney without simply drinking it and I figured a corn and zucchini fritter with an Indian flare would be perfect. Indeed it was. Eating a ton of vegetables that have been formed into a patty and crisped-up in olive oil is always a good idea. These fritters are somewhat fragile, meaning you can’t pick them up with your hands. I didn’t want to over-do the amount of flour that was in them. They’re more of a “hash brown” texture. And they are absolutely perfect with the cilantro-mint chutney. I like to add some heat to mine with a jalapeño. They are simple to make and come together rather quickly, which makes them perfect for a weeknight meal. They are a wonderful meal on their own, or serve them alongside something else as a side. Either way, I know you’re going to love them.
The Recipe: Curried Corn and Zucchini Fritters + Cilantro Mint Chutney
(makes 9 3-inch patties)
For the Corn and Zucchini Fritters:
2 ears of fresh sweet corn, cut off the cob
1 pound zucchini, coarsely grated
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (GF flour can be substituted)
1/2 teaspoon sweet curry powder (this is subtle, use more for more of a punch)
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
freshly ground pepper
1 egg, lightly beaten
olive oil, for frying
For the Cilantro Mint Chutney:
1/2 cup cilantro, slightly packed
1/2 cup fresh mint, slightly packed
3-4 tablespoons plain yogurt
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon freshly minced ginger
squeeze of lime
pinch of sugar
kosher salt to taste
minced jalapeño to taste (I used 1/4 of a large one)
To make the Cilantro Mint Chutney: combine all of the ingredients in a food processor. Blend until smooth. Season properly with sugar, salt, and lime. Set aside so the flavors can combine.
In a colander placed over a medium-sized bowl, combine the grated zucchini with 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Let sit for 10 minutes. Then gently squeeze the liquid from the zucchini with your hands. You want the zucchini to be as dry as possible, so it will crisp when fried.
In a medium-sized bowl, using your hands, gently combine the zucchini, corn, garlic, flour, curry powder, remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and pepper together. Making sure to evenly coat the vegetables with the flour. Then add the egg and mix again using your hands until everything is evenly moistened.
Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a hot skillet–cast-iron worked well. Form 3-inch patties that are about 1/2-inch thick with the zucchini mixture and gently place them in the skillet. Fry as many as will fit into the pan at a time. Fry on medium-high heat until the underside is a deep golden brown, then flip. Repeat until all of the mixture is gone. Be sure to add more olive oil into the pan each time. The fritters are best eaten immediately. Top with the chutney and enjoy!
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