We never saw courgettes when we were children, and I can’t really remember when I first came across them… it may have been the second time I went to Greece, to Corfu where we went to a little restaurant near the harbour, but away from where most of the tourists went. Certainly we ate courgettes there and I was amazed at how delicious they were and how many different ways there were of cooking them. I don’t remember buying, cooking or eating them much after that… but in recent years I have rediscovered them and I just love them. When friends complain about a surfeit of courgettes I’m envious and make hintful comments!
People seem to think courgettes, also known as zucchini are baby marrows… and they are; they are a variety of vegetable called cucurtbits and are cousins to cucumbers, squash and melons. I must admit that I thought squash came from North America and cucumbers, melons and marrows came from Europe or Asia… I must investigate further! Whatever their origin and ancestry, I really like all members of the cucurbit clan!
I have mentioned Ozlem Warren before, who has a wonderful cookery site; I saw a delicious sounding recipe for courgette fritters from Ozlem, and as I suddenly had a lot of courgettes it seemed a great idea to try it.
The recipe makes a batter with eggs, courgettes, Turkish cheese (I used feta) onion, spring onion and dill… I had the courgettes, I had the cheese, I had the onions… I had no dill but improvised with fresh basil and marjoram and thyme from the garden, which worked very well. I will buy dill and follow the recipe exactly next time! As with any recipe when you make it for the first time, there is an element of learning as you go. With the sort of pan I had I found it better to use very little oil to cook my fritters – Ozlem shallow fires hers – but she is an expert! Also I found it easier to use two dessert spoons to get the batter from the bowl and into the pan and then squidge it down and make it round (ish!)
The recipe worked perfectly and we ended up with twenty-one fritters – which disappeared very quickly! My husband had tomato sauce with his I had a chilli garlic sauce as a dip…
Here is a link to the recipe – but do look at other yummy suggestions on the site: