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Sweet corn fritters are a delicious breakfast, lunch, or dinner

Corn has been around for centuries. By the time the Pilgrims reached the New England coast in 1620, the flour they were bringing had gone bad. Fortunately, the Indians taught the Pilgrims how to grow and grind corn and these skills helped them survive. Many historic corn recipes have survived as well, and each region of the US seems to have its own favorite.

In the south they are the hushpuppies. In the north it is johnnycakes. In the southwest they are tortillas. Fritters were also popular with chuckwagon cooks. The batter was easy to make on the go and the fritters were deep fried in a cast iron skillet or kettle.

Corn fritters used to be a mainstay of southern cuisine. Then, for some unknown reason, his popularity waned. But this historic recipe is making a comeback. Today, fritters are a popular garnish and can contain zucchini, green onions, coriander, and chili peppers. You can even find recipes for Southeast Asian fritters with soy sauce on the internet.

Some recipes call for meat. In the first cookbook “Joy of Cooking”, the authors Irma s. Rombauer and Marion Rombauer Becker include a recipe for Corn and Ham Fritters. The baking powder and well-beaten egg whites make the fritters stand up. According to the authors, the liquid (water or milk) should be added quickly to the dry ingredients and you should avoid over mixing.

Betty Crocker’s website has posted a recipe for spicy corn fritters made with Bisquick’s original mix, water, canned corn, and canned chili peppers. But the recipe I like the most is from the “Good Housekeeping Cookbook,” a wedding gift my husband and I received decades ago. Makes fluffy golden fritters served with maple syrup. Add crispy bacon, ham or sausage, fresh fruit and you have a meal.

I have changed the recipe a bit. Instead of whole milk, I use skim milk and add sugar to it for sweetness. Here is the revamped version of the original recipe.

Ingredients

1 cup of regular flour previously sifted

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon low sodium salt

2 tablespoons sugar (or Splenda mix)

2 large eggs, room temperature

1/4 cup skim milk

2 tablespoons canola oil

2 1/2 cups whole kernel corn (drained canned corn or corn cut off the cob)

Oil for frying (canola or peanut)

Method

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, and salad oil. Add the corn. Whisk together the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients, making sure the corn is evenly distributed. For the oil in an electric or cast iron skillet. Heat the oil until it reaches 365 degrees. Drop tablespoons of batter into the oil (do not crowd the pan) and fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Serve immediately with warm maple syrup or sugar free syrup. Makes about 6 servings.

Copyright 2010 by Harriet Hodgson

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