Olathe Sweet Corn + Zucchini Fritters Recipe
Updated: Sep 11, 2022
Here in Western Colorado, we are blessed with fresh local produce all summer long. And a highlight of the summertime bounty is sweet, earthy, and delicious Olathe Sweet Corn. Named for the Western Slope town Olathe, the annual sweet corn crops have been synonymous with the town for decades.
Add in some fresh, local zucchini, and I'm ready to prepare one of my favorite summer recipes. Here it is:
500 g / 17.5 oz zucchini
1 tsp salt
1 egg lightly beaten or 2 tbsp ground flax for vegan version
1 cob of sweet corn (approximately 1 cup of kernels)
2 spring onions / scallions, finely chopped
a handful of basil leaves, finely chopped
a good grind of pepper
zest of 1 small lemon, optional
6 tbsp all-purpose flour
rounded ¼ tsp baking soda
vegetable oil, for frying
Grate zucchini coarsely, stir the salt through it and let it sit for 10 minutes.
Place grated zucchini inside a cheese cloth and squeeze as much liquid out of it as you can into a bowl underneath and keep the liquid.
If making the vegan version, in a small bowl, mix ground flax with 3 tbsp of zucchini liquid (keep another 30 ml / 2 tbsp just in case). Set aside to thicken.
Shave corn kernels off the cob with a sharp knife, chop half of the kernels well .
Combine squeezed out zucchini, corn kernels, egg, or thickened flax, finely chopped spring onions, basil leaves, black pepper, lemon zest (if using) in a large bowl. Mix well.
Stir the flour through the mixture – initially the mixture may look a little dry, but it will turn into a sticky batter in the fridge. Place it in the fridge for a couple of hours to thicken. After resting, the batter should not be runny, but it shouldn’t be dry either – it should stick together. If it’s too dry, add another tablespoon of the zucchini liquid.
Stir baking soda through the batter just before frying.
Heat up a medium skillet or frying pan on the stove. Once warm, add at least ¼ inch of oil and allow it to heat.
Drop a corn kernel into the hot oil, if it starts sizzling quite vigorously straight away, the oil is ready for your first fritter. If you have a thermometer, the temperature should read 350° F.
Lay a slightly heaped tablespoon of batter on the hot oil using. Flatten it very lightly (don’t make them too thin as they will fall apart) with the back of a spoon.
Once flattened, leave each fritter undisturbed for about 3 minutes before gently flipping to the other side and frying for another and 2-3 minutes.
Maintaining correct oil temperature is key to good fritters. If the fritters are bubbling too vigorously and browning too aggressively, decrease the heat a little or else they will burn on the outside and remain raw on the inside. If they are barely sizzling and not browning, turn the heat up a little. Overcrowding the pan will cause the oil temperature to drop too much so only fry 2-3 fritters at a time.
Transfer fried fritters to a kitchen towel-lined plate to soak up excess oil. Allow them to cool down a little and set as they are fragile when hot.
Serve warm alongside cream fraiche or choice or yoghurt seasoned with garlic, lemon, salt & pepper. And, enjoy!!