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Sometimes, you feel like being virtuous. You eat a big salad for lunch. Drink water all day. Skip the coffee, maybe go for a run, snack on some fruit, and go to bed early. These kinds of days are necessary.

But so are the days when you roll out of bed at 1pm, waste a couple of hours on the internet, then take a big pile of fresh vegetables and fry the heck out of them. These days are necessary too.

Summer Vegetable Fritters

This is the kind of fried dish that you could maybe fool yourself into thinking is actually semi-healthy. They only have to cook for a couple of minutes, so all the veggies keep their snap and personality.

You can pretty much use whatever vegetables you like with these, as long as they’re relatively quick-cooking and don’t give off a ton of liquid as they cook. I used baby corn (sliced into medium-thickness rings), asparagus (ditto), zucchini (chopped), and sugar snap peas (cut into thirds).

I served these with a little simple guacamole, but they’d also be delicious with sour cream, or onion dip, or salsa, or or or…

Makes 4 servings

8 ounces fresh summer vegetables (see note above)
4 ounces corn kernels (cut fresh off the cob, canned, or frozen)
2 eggs
1/4 cup of milk
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
dash cayenne pepper
vegetable oil for frying

Prepare your veggies: generally, you want to cut everything into corn-kernel-sized pieces except for things that are best raw or only very slightly cooked, like sugar snap peas. You can cut these into rather large pieces.

Mix: in a large bowl, whip your eggs with the milk, then quickly mix in your flour, baking powder, salt, and cayenne until it just comes together (don’t overwork it!). Add your prepared veggies and gently fold together.

Fry: heat a cast-iron pan over medium heat. Add enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan. When the oil shimmers, add tablespoonfuls of the vegetable batter and fry for 1-2 minutes, or until golden brown on the bottom, then flip and fry for another 1-2 minutes. Remove the fritters to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Serve immediately or keep them warm in a slow oven until serving time.

Music to cook by: Days [The Drums // Portamento]

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