spicy sweet corn, zucchini, and ricotta fritters with fresh tomato salsa


I was thinking again how much these fritters remind me of shrimp fritters. The first time I made them, I followed the original recipe. This time around, I changed things up. So I added more flour, lots of black pepper, and some fresh chilies. The chilies add flavor to the fritters, but if you want more heat, leave in the seeds. I like a tomato salsa with these fritters, and I prefer to make my own as the store-bought tends to be salty and sour. And fresh tastes better anyway!

Spicy Sweet Corn, Zucchini, & Ricotta Fritters (adapted from Taste.com)
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 16-20 minutes

1/2 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/2 cup fresh ricotta cheese
2 cups self rising flour, plus more for thickening
2 1/2 cups fresh corn, about 2 medium ears
2 1/2 cups grated zucchini, about 2 medium
1 small green sweet pepper, seeded and chopped
3 scallions, chopped
2 tablespoons black pepper, coarse ground
3-4 red chilies, seeded and chopped
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more as needed

Fresh tomato salsa, for serving
Baby cos lettuce (romaine lettuce), for serving

Whisk milk and eggs together. Add ricotta cheese and blend well. Add flour gradually, blending it in, stirring constantly so there are no lumps and a smooth batter forms. Add corn, zucchini and pepper. Stir in the scallions, black pepper, and the chilies. Season to taste with salt. The batter should be thick. Because the zucchini springs water, add more flour as needed. Test it—the batter should mound when dropped from a spoon. If it doesn’t, add more flour a tablespoon at a time.

Heat oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat until oil shimmers. Using a 1/4 cup measure, mound three scoops of batter into the skillet and fry until golden on one side, about 2-3 minutes. Flip and do the second side for another 2-3 minutes. If the heat is too hot, and the fritters fry up too quickly, turn down the heat a little. Do a second batch, adding more oil as needed. When you do, you will have to let the oil heat up again. Continue until all the batter is used up.

Drain fritters on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking tray. Serve with a fresh tomato salsa and baby cos leaves. Makes about 24 fritters.

Fresh Tomato Salsa (adapted from Eating Well)
• 1 large tomato, diced (or 2 medium)
• 1/4 cup scallion, minced
• 1-2 chilies, seeded and minced
• lime juice (half a small lime)
• 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
• Salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Serving Suggestion: Serve fritters with Tzatziki Sauce.