Thursday, July 29, 2010

Zucchini pancakes

My dear mother-in-law has made these for years, and they've become a favorite in our family as well. Mine are a little different; I think I add more pancake mix so they're closer to pancakes than fritters. And I think Noreen adds more cheese. This recipe is a great way to use up excess zucchini.

We've always made them with Bisquick but were in search of something a *little* less processed today. I was going to try making them totally from scratch but Mark reminded me of our buckwheat pancake mix so I decided to use that. Best batch ever.

Shred 4 small or 2 large (if using large ones, you may want to remove the seeds) zucchini. I use the food processor but you can get by with a box grater instead.
You can also use any veggies you'd like in these; adding starchier ones to the zukes is nice. Carrots, beets, corn, and potatoes are all good. (Great use of leftover corn on the cob)
Shred or chop 1 medium onion
Place shredded veggies into a bowl and sprinkle with 1 tsp kosher salt; let sit 5-10 minutes. Press out excess water. Zucchini is a pretty wet veggie and your pancakes will never cook if you skip this step.
Sprinkle with 1/2 -1 tsp garlic powder (fresh is harder to completely mix into the batter) and black pepper.
Add 1/2 c. grated Parmesan or Romano
Add 2 eggs, lightly beaten
Stir in about 2 c. buckwheat pancake mix. Enough to soak up a lot of moisture.

Heat a griddle brushed with oil over medium to medium high heat. Drop about 1/4 c. batter onto the hot griddle and spread it out a bit. As with breakfast pancakes, watch for the edges to partially cook and for bubbles to form on top in the batter. Flip when the bottom is golden-brown, cook 2 more minutes or until the other side is also golden-brown. They may be kind of moist inside but the egg should still be cooked through.

Mark likes his served with butter. I've always liked mine with sour cream and salsa, but in the interest of making this "cleaner" I used fat free Greek yogurt tonight instead of the sour cream and that was pretty tasty (and provided a little extra protein and calcium).

These are great leftovers, just reheat in the toaster oven.

Also, if you can't get to the zucchini right away, or you have a metric ton sitting in your kitchen, grate/shred and freeze it in small bags, pressing the air out and storing flat. When you thaw it, you can skip the salt and drain step because the freeze/thaw process already pushes a lot of the excess water out. Just salt to taste instead. I love making this recipe from frozen zucchini in winter; it's like a taste of summer in January.

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