mezze: herby courgette and feta fritters

A friend's birthday drinks and nibbles and we are eating on his roof terrace on a balmy summer night. These fritters were perfect; a little bit of the eastern Mediterranean came to east London.
A great way to make use of a courgette glut, these fritters make a fabulous mezze dish, but are perfect for a light lunch too. The onions, feta cheese and herbs also manage to jazz up what can be a quite bland vegetable but meets it's saviours with a little help!


 
Skill level: Easy


ingredients:
500g courgettes, coarsely grated
olive oil
1 x onion, finely chopped
3 x garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 x eggs
breadcrumbs
200g feta, crumbled
a handful of fresh herbs, roughly chopped - I use a mixture of mint, dill and flat-leaf parsley (less mint more parsley!)
¼ tsp cayenne pepper or smoked paprika
salt and freshly ground black pepper

directions:
  1. Place the grated courgettes in a large colander or sieve over a bowl and sprinkle over about 2 teaspoons of salt. Leave to drain for about 30 minutes. Then rinse and leave to drain again. Squeeze out the water. Place in a clean tea-towel and squeeze again to remove any excess water. Set aside.
  2. Gently fry the chopped onion until softened (about 10 minutes). Do not allow to brown.
  3. Add the garlic and stir. Continue to cook for 2 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  4. Lightly beat the eggs.
  5. Mix the courgettes, cooled onion and garlic mixture together with the chopped herbs and crumbled feta cheese. Add the spices including a grinding of black pepper. You probably won't need to add any salt at this stage but check the seasoning just in case.
  6. Combine with the beaten egg.
  7. At this point, if the mixture seems too runny to form the fritters, add about 1 tablespoon of dried breadcrumbs and stir. Leave for about 10 minutes to allow the breadcrumbs to absorb the moisture and help bind the mix together.
  8. Form into fritter or patty shapes. I tend to form balls about the size of a tablespoon and then slightly flatten them for easy of frying.
  9. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before cooking in batches.
  10. Heat about 1 tbsp olive oil in a frying-pan on a medium heat. When hot, add the fritters. They will spread out a bit. They will begin to set and turn a golden-brown colour after about 2 minutes. Flip them over and cook the other side.
  11. These are delicious on their own or served with a tangy tomato dipping sauce.

tips:
  • You can the coat the fritters in extra breadcrumbs for a crunchier texture.
  • Use different cheeses. I have made these with Stilton (divine) and mozzarella (amazing).

3 comments:

Dom at Belleau Kitchen said...

Ooh I love a courgette fritter and these look exceptional! Thanks x

Marmaduke Scarlet said...

Sadly I ate most of the first batch and had to whip up a second. Greedy guts that I am!

Marmaduke Scarlet said...
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