Mid-Summer Zucchini Fritters

What is better than heaps of veggies, eaten al fresco, on a warm summer eve?

Nothing.

Nothing is better than heaps of fresh veggies, eaten al fresco, on a warm summer eve.

Well, maybe add in an enormous glass of chilled wine. And a good book.

Zucchini is fresh as ever right now, and it’s seen stacked in toppling mounds in just about every market around, priced to sell. I like zucchini. But I LOVE zucchini fritters. They are savory yet fresh; light-but-satisfying. The PERFECT (in my mind) summer food. They could only have been made better if I had just sauntered home from a leisurely afternoon spent in salt water and sun.

Sure to cheer even the surliest of veggie-eaters!

AND they’re about 75-100 calories each! (depending on size)

Prepare yourself with:

2 c. zucchini, shredded

1 c. potato, peeled and shredded

2 medium eggs

1 shallot

1/4 c. finely grated cucumber

salt, pepper

garlic

1 c. non-fat greek yogurt

1 lemon

olive oil

Firstly, shred your zucchini and potato, and set aside in a colander to air dry a bit. During this set-aside-period, I season the mix with a good bit of salt.

While the veggies are draining, go ahead and work on your tzatziki! This is MY version of the classic Greek dip, so I’m certainly not claiming it’s TRUE tzatziki. For my dip, plop 1 cup of non-fat greek yogurt in a dish. Add in about a tablespoon or so of olive oil, the zest and juice of half a lemon, shmeared roasted garlic (or garlic powder), grated cucumber, and cracked pepper. Mint would be lovely here, but I have only just bought my wee plant today, and want to give it some time in the garden before harvest.

(At this time, go ahead and heat your oven to 350. This is where you’ll be keeping your fritters warm as you fry away)

Now, back to the veggies! Pile the grated potato/zucchini mix into a dishtowel or cheese-cloth and strain and strain until there’s not much liquid left. The more you strain, the lighter your fritters will be! In a separate bowl, whisk your eggs and shallot, then combine with the veggie mix. You may choose to season the mix, as I did, with perhaps a pinch more salt and pepper. In a frying pan, heat a shallow amount of olive oil on medium to high heat. I recommend frying fewer than 4 fritters at a time, as they are easier to manage that way. Once they’re golden on one side, flip, cook until golden again, then transfer to a paper-towel-padded cookie sheet and pop them in the oven. Layering the cookie sheet with paper towel will absorb the excess oil, so your gorgeous fritters won’t be soggy!

After all fritters are toasty, golden, and ready to go, plate them with a big ol’ dollop of tzatziki and ENJOY!

It was the perfect end of the week, mid-summer dinner. I dusted off the worn wood of my garden furniture, toted out a book, and leisurely spent the evening in the company of my faithful hound, a slow sultry breeze, and the luxury of a hard-bound novel. I can only hope the start to your weekend was delicious as mine. What are your moments of quiet indulgence?

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