It is one of my favorite snack or side dish because it’s a light and exquisite delicacy, with an appetizing aroma and an addictive taste.
Makes:25 to 30 fritters
- 1 cauliflower (1½ to 2 lb.)
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 2 medium eggs
- ½ cup of your preferred grated cheese
- ¼ cup minced parsley
- 1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts (optional)
- 1 tablespoon currants soaked in water (optional)
- Salt and pepper
- 1 cup breadcrumbs (more or less to get a workable, firm mixture)
- 1 cup flour for dipping the fritters
- Oil for frying
Trim the cauliflower discarding the stems and leaves; cut to separate it into florets and soak in cold water for 30minutes.
In a 6 quart sauce pot, over a high flame, bring 3 quarts of water to a boil.
When the water boils, add 1 tablespoon of salt, wash the cauliflower and drop into pot.
When the water returns to a boil, cook for 7 minutes, drain and set on side.
In a large sauté pot heat the 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
Add the chopped onions and sauté until translucent.
Add the cauliflower, raise heat to high and while stirring slowly, add the toasted pine nuts and drained currants.
Cook for 5 minutes than lower the flame.
If the cauliflower attaches to the pot and turns lightly brown, it is the sweetness of the onion caramelizing, which gives the cauliflower a unique smell and taste.
Lower the flame, start to mash the cauliflower with a fork and simmer for about 10 minutes.
Add pepper to taste and check if salt is needed.
Transfer the crushed cauliflower to a bowl and when it cools off add the eggs lightly beaten, the cheese, parsley and ¼ cup of breadcrumbs.
Add more breadcrumbs if needed in order to get the mixture to a workable consistency.
Form the mixture into balls1½ inch in diameter, roll into flour and gently pat into patties. Set on a well floured pan.
Heat a heavy duty skillet with olive oil ½ inch deep.
At 350 degree, before it starts to smoke (at 375 degrees) drop the fritters, “le polpette di cavolfiore” a few at the time until golden, typically 5 minutes at each side.
Drain on paper towels. Serve hot, but at room temperature are even tastier.
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