One of the easiest ways to use up zucchini is to slice and fry, plus it’s a tasty way to get your servings of vegetables in for the day. Kolokithakia tiganita (fried zucchini) is a delicious appetizer that’s coated in a spiced beer batter and deep fried to a golden crisp. The trick to these is to make sure the zucchini is thinly sliced, dried well, and dipped lightly in the batter. The result is a crisp treat that is a guaranteed crowd pleaser. My little brother gave them high praise by saying they are “the bomb dot com.” Try them and see for yourself. And when you do, be warned that they will certainly disappear from the table in no time. Serve with skordalia (garlic sauce) or the light yogurt sauce I paired with this dish.
- 3 medium zucchini
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 8 ounces of your beer of choice (Don’t be shy, ale or lager or even stout taste great.)
- ½ cup water
- Canola or vegetable oil, for frying
- Wash the zucchini. Using a mandolin or a sharp knife, thinly slice the zucchini—1/4 inch thick works well for me. Set aside for 10 minutes to dry.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt, pepper, baking powder, and paprika.
- Pour in the beer and whisk together. Slowly add the ½ cup of water little by little, until the batter is thin with no lumps. Add extra water if needed. Waste not, want not, so drink the remaining beer if you're like me.
- In a frying pan, heat oil to medium-high heat. There should be enough oil to come up half an inch on your frying pan.
- Dip the zucchini pieces into the batter, and then carefully immerse into the hot oil. When one side is crispy and golden brown, flip and cook on the other side—about 2-3 minutes each side.
- Remove and place the zucchini on a paper towel to drain. Repeat the process until all the zucchini slices are cooked. You may have to replenish oil as you add more batches.
- Serve immediately with skordalia or yogurt dip.
To make the yogurt sauce:
1 cup Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon dill (fresh or dried)
Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Add all ingredients to a bowl and mix well with a spoon. Flavors enhance with time, so try to make this dip ahead and chill it in your fridge.