- Food & Drink
In a fit of enthusiasm, I bought too many courgettes. This can’t be a problem many people have. Enthusiasm is not something normally associated with courgettes. Resignation, maybe. Regret. A little light puzzlement. These are all classic reactions to courgettes. An entire fridge drawer filled with courgettes often elicits panic, dizziness and a sense of dread at the thought that the compost bin may already be full.
But I have no garden and thus no compost bin, so I regard the courgette pile as a challenge. One I faced up to on Sunday when I made courgette and sweetcorn pancakes for breakfast. They were the result of a fridge forage that produced a corncob, eight soft cherry tomatoes, a tiny red onion and a chunk of feta, as well as a drawer of courgettes.
The recipe only used one large courgette, so I still have some courgette ground to cover. But it was a start.
Courgette & Sweetcorn Polenta Pancakes
1 corn on the cob
A few sprigs of coriander
150g fine polenta
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp caster sugar
2 tsp smoked paprika
2 medium eggs
200ml whole milk
Oil, for frying
Coarsely grate the courgette and scrape it into a colander. Sprinkle with a good pinch of sea salt. Turn to mix, then put the colander in the sink. Lay a plate on top of the courgette and weigh it down. Leave for 1 hour to drain.
Pull the silks off the corn cob and slice a slither off the bottom of the cob so it sits upright on your board. Run a knife down the corncob to slice off the kernels. Separate them and put them in a large mixing bowl.
Press the courgette with the flats of your hands into the sieve to squeeze out as much water as possible. Break up and add to the bowl.
Chop the coriander leaves and stalks and add them to the bowl with the polenta, baking powder, caster sugar, smoked paprika and a pinch of salt. Stir to mix.
Crack the eggs into a separate bowl and beat them together. Beat in the milk. Stir into the courgette mixture till you get a thick batter. Set aside for 5 minutes to thicken up.
Set your oven to its lowest temperature. Warm a large pan over a medium heat. Add a splash of oil and swirl it around the pan to coat it. Drop in heaped tablespoons of the batter – you should be able to fry 3-4 pancakes at a time. Don’t make them too big.
Fry them for 3-4 minutes till they are golden and set underneath. Carefully flip over and fry for another 3-4 minutes till they are golden and set. Slide onto a plate and keep warm in the oven while you cook the rest of the pancakes, adding more oil to the pan as you need to.
Serve the pancakes with feta, salsa, guacamole or whatever you pancake jazz you prefer.