What’s a Nice Vegetable Like You Doing in a Batter Like This?

 
I am working on a recipe for rhubarb catsup, which I thought would be just wonderful for Memorial Day weekend. I pictured it on a nice grilled burger on top of a red, white, and blue plate.
 
Alas, the catsup is still a work in progress. So I’m giving you a recipe that isn’t really a holiday recipe—or maybe it is. It certainly isn’t an everyday recipe since it manages to take a healthy seasonal food (asparagus) and make it into something really, really, really, really fattening.
 
And really, really, really REALLY delicious.

 
Tinky’s Asparagus Fritters
 
Ingredients:
 
1 pound asparagus
2 cups flour, divided
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
freshly ground pepper to taste
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup beer
1 egg
peanut or canola oil as needed for frying
lemon wedges
coarse salt (optional)
 
Instructions:
 
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
 
Wash and trim the asparagus spears, and cut them into small pieces—between 1 and 2 inches long.
 
Pop the pieces of asparagus into boiling water. Return the water to the boil, and cook the asparagus for 1 more minute. Drain the pieces in a colander with ice so that they will stop cooking immediately.
 
In a bowl thoroughly combine 1 cup of the flour, the baking powder, the salt, the pepper, the lemon zest, and the cheese.
 
Whisk together the beer and the egg. Stir this liquid mixture into the flour mixture. (A few lumps are just fine.)
 
Place the remaining cup of flour in a small bowl.
 
Pour oil into a frying pan until it is about 1 inch deep. Heat the oil until it is about 350 degrees.
 
Dredge each piece of asparagus in the small bowl of flour; then dip it into the liquid fritter batter so that it is coated.

 
Pop each fritter into the oil and cook it quickly, turning as needed, until it is golden brown. Do not crowd the fritters in the pan!
 
(Don’t worry if the flour and batter don’t adhere perfectly to the asparagus spears. A little green peeking out of the batter looks attractive. And don’t worry if your fritters are oddly shaped. Each one will have its own personality, and that will be just fine.)
 
When individual fritters are ready drain them on paper towels and store them in the warm oven until all the fritters have been cooked. You may end up with a little extra asparagus if you run out of batter or just get tired of cooking. Use this in a salad or a stir fry.
 
Serve with lemon wedges so that your guests can sprinkle a little juice on their fritters. They may add a little coarse salt for extra zing if they wish. (I wish!)
 

Serves 4 to 6.


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4 Responses to “What’s a Nice Vegetable Like You Doing in a Batter Like This?”

  1. If you fry it, they will come…or at least I will. Your fritters look fantastic.

  2. As I love Japanese tempura, I know I will love this – but how many lore miles would I have to walk in the mornings to burn off the calories??!!

  3. tinkyweisblat says:

    Ah, Frayed, you have hit the nail on the head–but you and Abigail are both right: they’re very lovable.

  4. Oh good lord, Tinky, I’m drooling.

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