In all honesty…last night I was really starting to kick myself for dreaming up “Farm Fresh Fridays.” Its been a pretty busy week and hadn’t bothered to take any pictures on the nights that we HAD cooked (not many). And suddenly, Friday was looming.
On top of that, the city was in one of its uncooperative moods yesterday — if you live in Chicago (or any large city I would think) — you can probably relate to this: the teensy grocery store by my office didn’t have some of the ingredients I needed; the CTA took 25 minutes to arrive; some crazy teenager cussed me out for walking across the street WHEN I HAD THE LIGHT because she wanted to turn left and apparently I wasn’t moving fast enough; on my second grocery store trip to the living-nightmare Jewel-Osco near our condo….the seafood counter had a line 5 people deep, as did every single check-out line. By the time I got home, I really just felt like cracking open a beer and calling it a night — but noooo, I had “Farm Fresh Friday” to prepare for…
But once I got started, I was glad that I’d bothered with it. As I’ve mentioned before, cooking is my therapy, and as I started slicing veggies and mixing spices, I could feel myself relaxing. Plus, I tried a new recipe, which always makes me happy. We’d managed to put a pretty good dent in our CSA vegetable supply, but still had a couple ears of corn and a zucchini left. I’d seen a post on sweetcorn fritters recently on the blog Eating Out Loud, so I’d decided to try my hand at them….afterall, everything tastes better fried and I was in no mood for a health kick.
One of JiT other favorites is peel-and-eat shrimp seasoned with a heavy dousing of Old Bay, some cayenne and chili powder, a crushed garlic clove and some olive oil. Throw them in the broiler, add a squeese of lemon and bust out the paper towels.
Paired with the fritters and a cold beer and we were feeling very Southern, but back to the fritters — I’d not made these before so I wasn’t really sure what to expect but they were really good! Similar to a hushpuppy but with far more fresh flavor and a lighter taste. In addition to the sweet corn and zucchini I’d also added some chopped red bell pepper and shredded onion, so they were colorful (the picture really didn’t do them justice — sorry JiT) and very flavorful with little bursts of sweetness from the corn and a mellow, almost creamy flavor from the zucchini, all wrapped in a crispy little package. I served them with some sour cream ranch dip and they were delicious. JiT, who’d initially declared that he wasn’t hungry, gobbled up several along with the better part of the shrimp.
Speaking of JiT, I wanted to share a really cool picture he took the other night. His father, a master of bargain shopping, just sent him one of those “touch lamps” that changes color when its turned on or if you touch it (since JiT just took a new job as creative director of a new agency, his dad thought it would be a nice decoration for his desk). JiT took a picture of the lamp the other night and I thought it was nifty looking, so I wanted to share. He does more than food, folks!
Anyway, on to the fritters…oh, and next week, I promise to be a little nicer about Farm Fresh Fridays….afterall, the veggies really aren’t to blame.
Sweet Corn, Zucchini Fritters
1/2 cup bisquick
1/4 teaspoon cumin
2 tablespoons sugar
fresh ground black pepper
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup milk or buttermilk
1/2 cup grated zucchini (1 small zucchini)
1 cup fresh corn, kernels cut from cob (about 2 ears)
1/4 cup finely shredded Cheddar cheese
oil for frying
In a large bowl, stir together bisquick, cumin, sugar, salt and pepper. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add in the egg and milk, stir until the mixture is well combined. Add in zucchini, corn kernels and cheese. Stir until well-combined. If mixture seems too runny, add in an additional bisquick as-needed to reach a thick batter consistency.
In a large skillet, heat oil to cover the bottom of the pan over medium-high heat. Drop batter by spoonfuls (an ice-cream scoop is a good size) into the oil and fry until crisp, turning once to brown evenly on both sides. Drain on paper towels and serve warm.