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Greek Zucchini Fritters (Kolokithokeftedes) with Tzatziki

By Kristy Del Coro

Makes about about 16 Fritters +  2 ¼ cups Tzatziki


For Fritters:

Ingredients:

2 cups packed grated zucchini (about 2 medium)

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 large scallion, white and light green parts only, chopped (about ¼ cup chopped)

½ cup crumbled feta cheese

1 large egg, lightly beaten

½ - ¾ cup all purpose flour

2 Tablespoons chopped fresh dill

1 teaspoon dried mint or 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh mint 

ground black pepper to taste

optional: zest from 1/2 medium lemon

About ¼ cup good extra virgin olive oil for frying


Directions:

  1. In a small mixing bowl, sprinkle grated zucchini with salt and toss to coat. 

  2. Transfer zucchini to fine mesh strainer and nestle over the mixing bowl. Let sit for at least 30 minutes to allow natural water from zucchini to drain into the bowl. Meanwhile gather your other ingredients.

  3. After zucchini has sat for at least 30 minutes, using your hands or a spatula, gently press zucchini against mesh strainer to extract any remaining liquid. 

  4. Discard the liquid and transfer strained zucchini back to the bowl.

  5. Add chopped scallions, feta, beaten egg, ½ cup flour, dill, mint, black pepper, and lemon zest if using. Stir well to combine; flour should get completely absorbed into the liquid mixture. Mixture should be moist but also thick enough to form a patty (similar to the consistency of thick zucchini bread batter). If too wet, add remaining flour. 

  6. Prepare pan: Add enough olive oil to generously coat the bottom of pan and turn heat to medium. Warm oil for about 1 - 2 minutes or until it starts to shimmer but not smoke. To see if the oil is hot enough, gently drop a small spoonful of batter into the pan and if it sizzles, the oil is ready.

  7. To make fritters: Take about 2 Tablespoons of batter and either gently form into a patty using your hands OR spoon directly into the preheated oil and use the back of a spoon or spatula to gently press down into a patty while in the pan. Be mindful of splattering and lower heat as necessary to prevent from smoking. Continue adding batter to the pan until it is full but leave about ½ inch or more between each patty so that they don’t stick to each other. 

  8. Fry 2-3 minutes per side until golden brown and cooked through. Transfer to paper towel lined plate or parchment paper and allow to cool before serving. 


For Tzatziki:

Ingredients:

1 English seedless cucumber, peeled and grated

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 cups plain Greek yogurt (2% or whole)

2 small cloves garlic

3 Tablespoons chopped fresh dill

Juice from ½ lemon

1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil


Directions:

  1. In a small mixing bowl, sprinkle grated cucumber with salt and toss to coat. 

  2. Transfer cucumber to fine mesh strainer and nestle over the mixing bowl. Let sit for at least 15 minutes to allow natural water from cucumber to drain into the bowl.  Meanwhile, gather your other ingredients. 

  3. After cucumber has sat for at least 15 minutes, using your hands, gently press cucumber against mesh strainer to extract any remaining liquid.

  4. Discard the liquid and transfer strained cucumber back to the bowl along with the yogurt.

  5. Using a microplane grater or garlic press, finely grate or press garlic cloves over the bowl of cucumber and yogurt. Add chopped dill, lemon juice, and olive oil. Stir to combine.

  6. Check seasoning and adjust with additional salt if necessary. Serve with zucchini fritters.

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