How to make fritters (courgette, for example)

4 November 2012

Courgette fritters I often find myself disappointed by fritters, usually because they’re heavy and gluey from too much flour and insufficiently beaten egg whites. A fritter in my mind is essentially a small omelette, and should therefore be fluffy and mostly made of egg.

All fritters follow a standard pattern. To make a basic fritter, start by whisking together egg yolks with a small amount of flour, along with baking powder, salt, pepper, and any other herbs and spices you wish to use. Stir in the main ingredient, which needs to be finely chopped or grated. Finally, incorporate beaten egg whites. Fry in butter, and serve with wedges of lemon or lime.

My favourite fritter flavours include whitebait; and steamed, smoked or marinated seafood. Mussels, cockles, pipi and tuatua all work well. Vegetable fritters can also be delicious, such as grated carrot with cumin and fresh coriander leaves. I am also a fan of courgette fritters, especially when they are made with “Greek” flavours such as mint, lemon and garlic. My courgette fritter recipe is below. Feel free to experiment with different flavours!

  • For two servings:
    2–3 medium courgettes
    4 eggs
    2 tbsp flour
    ½ tsp baking powder
    2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
    A handful of fresh mint, chopped
    The zest of one lemon
    Salt and pepper, to taste
    Yoghurt and lemon wedges to serve
  • Grate the courgettes and toss them in plenty of salt. Leave for about ten minutes, then wring them thoroughly using a tea towel.
  • Separate the eggs. Whisk together the yolks with the flour, baking powder, salt and pepper until they form a smooth paste. Stir in the courgette, lemon zest, garlic and half the mint.
  • Beat the egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Using a large spoon or spatula, stir a small amount of the egg white into the courgette batter, then delicately fold in the rest until only just combined.
  • Heat some butter in a pan over a medium heat. When the foam just begins to subside, drop spoonfuls of the batter into the pan. Turn the fritters after about a minute, when they are golden brown. Cook for another minute or so on the second side.
  • Serve with lemon wedges, yoghurt, and the rest of the fresh mint.