Cucuzza (AKA Snake Squash) is so freakin’ GINORMOUS! Just one is the equivalent of 4 zucchini. So out of the goodness of my heart, I’m giving you another recipe.
I was planning on making a variation of Spice Zucchini Bread with the extras until Mom found a hand-written, oil-stained recipe in our attic. It was from our neighbor Dotty! She and her husband, George had a beautiful garden and would give us veggies galore in the summer time. Zucchini were always bountiful so Dotty gave us her favorite recipe using them.
I adapted Dotty’s recipe using Cucuzza instead of Zucchini. I also added extra carrots and basil from my Soup au Pistou. You can use any “grate-able” veggies and herbs that come the farmer’s market or your friend’s garden, but what makes these special is the Cucuzza! They taste nuttier and look greener in color when compared to Zucchini. A true novelty!
~*~ CUCUZZA GARDEN FRITTERS ~*~
SERVES: ABOUT 8 FRITTERS ⎪ DIFFICULTY: INTERMEDIATE | FUNK: CASUAL
Mise en Place
6 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
2 medium yellow onions, peeled and finely diced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1.5 pounds cucuzza, peeled and grated
2 small carrots, peeled and grated
4-5 ounces fresh basil, thinly sliced
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
salt & pepper, to taste
Playlist — Air
1. SAUTÉE THE AROMATICS
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and sautée until soft, then add the garlic. Cook for 1 minute more, then remove from heat and set aside.
*NOTE* If you have one, use a non-stick skillet. The fritters brown more evenly and (obviously) won’t stick. But I used a cast-iron because it’s all I had and they still turned our great!
2. SQUEEZE THE CUCUZZA
Working in batches, place the grated cucuzza on paper towels, cheese cloth, or a kitchen towel. Squeeze out as much water as possible.
*TIP* If using paper towels, make sure they’re the thick sturdy kind. Cheap paper towels won’t work here because they tear easily.
3. MAKE THE FRITTER BATTTER
Add onions, cucuzza, carrots, basil, egg, and flour to a mixing bowl. Season with salt and pepper, then mix thoroughly.
4. FRY THE FRITTERS
Heat remaining oil over medium heat in the same pan used to cook the onions. When oil is hot, mold a patty (any size you want) and fry about 3 minutes each side until golden brown. Repeat with remaining batter.
Enjoy with sour cream and/or tomato salsa.
Wrap leftovers (if any) in aluminum foil and store in the fridge for up to 1 week. Reheat in a 250F oven for about 5 minutes. Freeze in a ziplock bag for up to 1 month.
~*~ GF VARIATION ~*~
Replace all-purpose flour with any gluten free flour like quinoa, almond, or chickpea.
~*~ VEGAN VARIATION ~*~
Replace egg with preferred egg substitute.
How would you use Cucuzza? Let me know what you’ve cooked and leave a comment below.