Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Fried Zucchini from the Garden

Since moving to Michigan, I have been having a blast with the garden.  There is always something coming out of it - even this late in the season.  About a month or so ago, there was some really cold weather that affected our zucchini and summer squash plants, our cucumbers and acorn squash plants.  They had produced for a couple weeks, then finished.  I was pretty disappointed in the harvest , and had been making all kinds of great plans for the harvest.  Then last week as I was making my rounds throughout the garden, I noticed that the plants were reflowering and teeny tiny baby squash were emerging from the flowers!  I was so surprised and happy!  We also have okra plants that my Hubby has been convinced were planted too late and will amount to nothing.  I have told him to be positive and that they will produce, even though I know nothing of the plants and despite the fact that his father used to grow them for income back in the Dominican Republic.  And imagine my surprise and happiness in noticing that those same okra plants that had flowered and done nothing about a month ago, have again flowered and teeny tiny okra are beginning to grow!  I really hope they continue to grow and produce, even if we only get a handful.  Our Japanese eggplants are re-growing again and are only a couple inches long right now, so I'm really hoping for some more nice, sunny weather.  Until then, I decided to make some fried zucchini to celebrate the new crop of squash and will hopefully be posting more about the delicious veggies from the garden.

Fried Zucchini:

Crispy, Salty Goodness!

Serves 2-3

1 large or 2 small zucchini, washed well and sliced into 1/4" circles

Wet Mix:
1/3 cup unbleached flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup water
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2 generous pinches cayenne pepper, optional

Dry Mix:
1 cup unbleached flour
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2 generous pinches cayenne pepper

1.  Place the sliced zucchini on a small plate and set aside until ready to use.
2.  Place the wet mix ingredients in a bowl and whisk them together until a batter forms.  Set that next to the zucchini. 
3.  In a second small bowl, add your dry mix ingredients and whisk together until all the ingredients are well combined. 
4.  Place a large saute pan over medium heat and place about 1/4" canola or other no-taste oil inside the pan.  Allow the oil to heat as you begin to prepare the zucchini. 
5.  Get two large clean plates ready.  Cover one plate with multiple layers of paper towels and set aside.  The second plate will be the place you put your dipped zucchini slices on. 
6.  Take a few of your zucchini slices and dip them in the wet mix.  Keep one hand for the wet mix and the other for the dry mix.  Using the wet hand, swish the zucchini around until they are well coated.  Now drain off any excess liquid and place them one at a time into the spiced flour mix.  Using your dry hand, toss them around until they are completely covered with the flour.  Shake off any excess flour.  Place the finished zucchini slices on the clean plate.  Continue to do this until the oil is hot. 
7.  Place the coated zucchini slices into the oil and allow them to fry for several minutes on each side, until they are golden and crispy.  Once they are cooked on both sides, transfer them to the plate with the paper towel and immediately sprinkle them with a little bit of the sea salt.  Continue dipping the zucchini and frying them until all have been fried.
8.  Try to wait at least a minute for them to cool before popping them in your mouth - I know it's almost impossible, but it really burns when the water inside the cooked zucchini squirts your tongue!  So yummy, crunchy and delicious! 



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