4 essential gadgets for your kitchen

October 14, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Kitchen gadgets you must have! Plus, a delicious zucchini pancake recipe.

Miniature Zucchini Pancakes with Asian Dipping Sauce
From Sur La Table's Things Cooks Love by Marie Simmons, Andrews McMeel Publishers
Serves 4

Serve these tiny pancakes for a snack or hors d'oeuvre during the summer when zucchini are abundant at farmers' markets. They are delicious with a chilled glass of Pinot Gris or other crisp white wine. Shred the zucchini and carrot over a bowl on the wide (1/4 inch) shredding blade of a box or flat grater. Use the rasp grater for the onion and ginger. The zucchini are soft and shred quickly and easily.

Implements:
Graters, Dry Measuring Cups, Spiral or Flat Whisk, Large and Small Bowls, Citrus Juicer, Measuring Spoons, Paring Knife, Rubber Spatula, Liquid Measuring Cups, Chef's Knife, 10-inch Iron or other Heavy (not nonstick) Skillet, Slotted Spoon or Spatula, Wire Rack,

Ingredients

  • Asian Dipping Sauce:
  • 1/4 cup light soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup Asian fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon thinly sliced jalapeño or serrano chiles
  • 1 clove garlic, grated

Pancakes:

  • 3 small zucchini
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled
  • 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1-inch wedge yellow onion
  • 1/4 cup cracker meal or matzo meal
  • 1 tablespoon minced cilantro
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • Canola or other vegetable oil

1. Make the dipping sauce: In a small bowl whisk the soy sauce, lime juice, water, fish sauce, sugar, chile, and garlic. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside until ready to use. Sauce may be refrigerated for up to 5 days before serving.

2. Make the pancakes: Trim the stem and blossom ends from the zucchini. Working over a large bowl, rub the cut end over the wide shredding blade on a box or flat grater. There should be about 2 cups shredded zucchini. Repeat with the carrot. You should have about ½ cup grated carrot. Grate enough ginger on a rasp grater to yield about 2 tablespoons. Then grate the onion on a rasp grater to yield about 1 tablespoon. Add the ginger and onion to the zucchini, along with the cracker meal and cilantro.

3. Add the eggs and salt to the zucchini and stir with a rubber spatula until well blended. Let stand 10 minutes.

4. Place a wire rack on a rimmed sheet pan. Add oil to a depth of 1/2-inch to a 10-inch heavy cast iron or other heavy skillet. Heat over medium heat until a small crust of bread dropped in the hot oil light browns on contact. Drop rounded tablespoons of the zucchini mixture into the hot oil, forming pancakes about 1 1/2 inch in diameter. Fry turning once with a slotted spoon or spatula and adjusting the heat between medium and medium-low as needed to keep the pancakes gently sizzling, for 2 to 3 minutes per side or until golden brown. Using the slotted spoon, transfer the pancakes to the rack. Repeat with the remaining zucchini mixture in 2 or 3 more batches.

5. Serve warm and accompany them with the dipping sauce.


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