I was looking through an almost 20-year-old Antonio Carluccio book of his favourite Italian recipes a few days ago and came across these courgette fritters that I remember making with my son – almost 20 years ago! I’m not sure why I haven’t made them since as I remember we loved them and they’re pretty easy to make and a great way of using courgettes, especially if you have a glut from growing your own. Well, it’s a little late in the year for that … but I did have two large organic courgettes in my fridge in need of using and some organic salmon fillets in the freezer. I’ve been busy with the ‘day job’ as a freelance book editor so I grabbed said courgettes and salmon from their storage places and decided to do something with them this evening. I find cooking relaxing so making this dish was something to look forward to at the end of my working day. Carluccio’s recipe (just called Courgette Fritters) made 24 fritters and used 3 eggs, so I cut everything down to about a third as it was just me eating!
Courgette, Parmesan & Mint Fritters– Makes about 8
- 250g (about 1 large or 2 small) courgettes, coarsely grated
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 level tablespoon grated Parmesan
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- a little freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 level tablespoons plain flour
- 1 level tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint
- olive oil for shallow frying
Coarsely grate the courgettes and put with all the other ingredients – except the olive oil – in a bowl.
Heat the oil – about 1cm deep – in a frying pan. When it’s hot, gather tablespoons of the courgette mixture into a ball and drop carefully into the hot oil. Flatten a little with a spatula or spoon so they cook through.
The fritters are very fragile. Wait until they are well cooked and beautifully brown on the bottom before carefully turning over to cook the other side.
Remove to a plate with a piece of kitchen towel on it to drain a little. Serve as I did with grilled salmon or they’d go brilliantly with simply cooked chicken, or even eat them on their own as a vegetarian meal.
I made the fritters really quickly as Carluccio suggests and they were delicious and felt wonderfully decadent for a Monday evening supper. The outside had a nice slightly crispy and caramelised coating; the inside was soft and creamy. I think another time I might not do it as instantly as Carluccio and prepare the courgettes 20-30 minutes ahead and salt them and leave them in a colander so some of their watery liquid drains off as you’d achieve a fritter easier to handle and a little less floppy. But they were good and I can’t wait to make them again!