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Zucchini Pancakes--A Different Take

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HistoricFoodie View Drop Down
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    Posted: 12 July 2016 at 08:44
You never know where you’ll find a great recipe. Case in point, these Russo/Ukrainian zucchini pancakes.

A guest at the hotel where I work had left behind a book of crossword puzzles. Tucked inside were several additional puzzles, clipped from copies of the Los Angeles Times. While looking at them, I discovered this recipe, which comes from Bonnie Morales, chef at Kachka restaurant in Portland, Oregon. While the restaurant is titularly Russian, they serve dishes from all over the former Soviet Union and environs.

Zucchini pancakes are fairly common in Ukraine, Belarus and Western Russia, she notes. But the sauce of kefir, sour cream, scallions, lemon juice and dill is her own innovation.

ZUCCHINI PANCAKES WITH CREAMY DILL SAUCE

½ cup kefir (sub yogurt)     
½ cup sour cream
3 tbls dill chopped     
2 tbls scallions, sliced thin
1 tsp lemon juice or to taste     Salt & pepper

4 small zucchini, coarsely grated
½ cup farmer’s cheese     
1 egg, beaten
¾ cup all-purpose flour     
½ cup buttermilk
Olive oil for frying

Make sauce: In a medium bowl, stir kefir, sour cream, 3 tablespoons dill, 2 tablespoons scallions and the lemon juice until combined. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Make batter: In a large bowl, fold together zucchini, cheese, egg and flour. Whisk in buttermilk. Season with salt.

Pour enough oil into a large pan to cover base with ¼ inch oil. Set pan over medium heat and, once oil is hot, drop a small bit of batter into pan. If it sizzles gently on contact, start frying. Pour ¼ cup batter into pan and gently flatten it, making one pancake. Repeat until pan is full but not overcrowded. Shallow-fry pancakes until golden, about 4 minutes. Flip and fry until golden on reverse side, about 3 minutes more. Transfer cooked pancakes to a paper-towel lined platter. Repeat with additional oil and remaining batter. Season pancakes with salt.

Serve pancakes with sauce drizzled on top, along with a tomato/cucumber salad.

     
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pitrow View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pitrow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2016 at 14:31
Sounds interesting! I might have to give this a go soon. Thanks for posting. 
Mike
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gonefishin View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gonefishin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2016 at 17:15
   yeah, sounds really good!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 July 2016 at 07:54
They really are great. And, while she suggests a tomato/cucumber salad, a radish salad goes nicely as well.

Kefir isn't real common. If you can't find it, a thin yogurt (not Greek style) is a good substitute. In theory, small curd cottage cheese can sub for the farmer's cheese. But, as somebody once said, "in theory, theory and reality are the same. In reality, they're not. If you go with the wetter cottage cheese, try letting it drain for a while. And you might still have to up the flour a bit, to make up for the additional moisture.
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