This recipe is a step outside my comfort zone. I typically don’t cook with zucchini or make fritters/patties/pancake-like dishes. But this week I was in need of something new and inspiring. I came across a zucchini fritters recipe on Wholehearted Eats and decided to give it a shot. I added za’atar that I had in my cupboard and a mustard seed compote on the side that I made up on the spot. The result was a rich and satisfying patty. I paired it with avocado, chard, and a fried egg. Later in the day, I had the leftovers with baked salmon, a dill-yogurt sauce, and a big fennel and arugula salad. I imagine that these fritters are nice with a wide variety of dishes that can be eaten for any meal of the day.
The flour in the recipe is from gluten free rolled oats, but any flour will do. You can also replace the flour with a couple of eggs as the binder. The mustard seed compote is cooked down mustard, dill, and fennel seeds. It is a sweet and tangy topping that gives a nice bold flavor to the fritters. It is totally optional, but it adds a unique edge to the dish which is quite pleasant. Pickled mustard seeds would taste quite nicely as well!
2 1/2 cups zucchini, grated
1 carrot, grated
1/3 cup oats, ground into a flour
2 tbsp chopped dill
1 garlic clove
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp za’atar
1 tbsp black sesame seeds
1 scallion, chopped
1 tbsp sumac
1 tbsp oregano
1 tbsp thyme
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
1/4 tsp sea salt
Optional additions are: marjoram, cumin
Prep time: 15 minutes | Cooking time: 30 minutes | Makes: 10 small or 4 large patties
1. Mix the za’atar. In a mortar and pestle grind all the spices together. I like using a Japanese grooved mortar with a wooden pestle. There will be extra mix! Use it to top salads, yogurt, crackers, or vegetables!
2. Prep zucchini patties. Grate the zucchini and carrots; mince the garlic and chop the scallion. Place the zucchini in a colander to drain. In a spice or coffee grinder blend the oats into a flour. Then, squeeze as much water as possible out of the shredded zucchini. Mix all ingredients thoroughly in a bowl.
3. Make zucchini patties. If you’d like to keep the patties/fritters warm while you cook another component of your meal, turn the oven on low and place the patties on a baking sheet as you go along.
In a skillet melt your oil of choice (I’ve gone with coconut) and turn the heat to medium-low. Be very aware of your oil’s smoke point and make sure to keep the heat to a reasonable temperature.
Depending on the size patty you’d like, take a small amount of the mixture in your palms and create a ball. Flatten it out and place on the skillet. Cook for about 4-5 minutes on eat side or until golden brown. Flip a few times if you like. For a nice crispy edge, turn the heat up at the end and let each side cook for 1 minute.
4. Serve. These zucchini fritters go well with a variety of fixings. Garlic sauted kale and eggs, avocado and the mustard seed condiment, salmon and a yogurt dill sauce are just a few ideas, or on top of a big salad. They will keep for a few days and are pleasant cold or warmed up. Enjoy!