Maddie came home with a huge mason jar filled with fresh corn that she'd spent an hour shucking at her auntie Karen's house, and, after some pretty aggressive cajoling to get her to share it with the rest of us, she finally agreed to let me use one cup--and one cup only, mind--in this breakfast-for-dinner savoury-pancake/fritter recipe. She knew she had worked long and hard to get those valuable golden kernels, with two finger-nicks to boot, and she wasn't giving them up easily.
But just as I was starting to mix the batter, the inevitable texts from the menfolk started coming in. Q was already in Regina so I knew he was out of the picture but then both boys also bailed on dinner--one was babysitting and the other was heading out with friends after work. Suddenly four place settings reduced to two. Two fewer critics too, I guess, so that was an upside. Anyway, it simplified things in the end because although I'd been planning to grill some fish or chicken to go alongside these, I knew they'd stand alone just for the girlfolk. So Maddie and I sat down to our corn pancakes together, which were much thicker than expected and more like fritters, with some tangy salsa and sour cream on the side, and, although they were delicious, she eventually admitted that she'd really just prefer a bowl of her fresh corn, nicely heated please. Straight up, nothing fancy. And she was right. Mother Nature was way more delicious than anything I could put on the table. Totally creamy and satisfying and a meal in itself.
After reading Jen's post on Sunday about a fellow food blogger's recent loss of her husband, and her request for people to make his favourite peanut-butter cream pie in his memory, Maddie and I were similarly inspired to take up her challenge. After reading all the postings online and browsing through the photos of the dozens of interpretations of the recipe and the outpouring of good wishes from strangers worldwide, we were struck by the incredible and universal response to grieving through the preparation and sharing of food. When a friend recently died of cancer, her husband said at the funeral that he knew how bad things were during her illness by the number of lasagnas that they had in their freezer at any given time. At one point it was 35. Friendship indeed.
All of this, of course, led to a conversation about our own mortality and our own favourite foods (her: trifle; me: anything dulce de leche) but in the end, Maddie was more focused on his two young daughters' sudden loss of their Daddy. So she suggested that we decorate the top with Hershey's kisses to symbolize their love. And that's exactly what we did.
Zucchini Corn Pancakes
makes about 10 to 12
4 large eggs, beaten
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
3 cups grated zucchini
1 cup fresh sweet corn right off the cob or frozen corn
1 cup shredded old cheddar cheese
1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
In a large bowl, combine eggs, oil, salt, pepper, and dried herbs. Whisk to combine.
Add the zucchini, corn and cheddar and mix well with a spatula. Add the flour and stir until combine and there are no pockets of dry flour hiding in the batter.
Heat a large skillet to medium-high heat, adding a small amount of oil to the skillet. Scoop 1/4 cupfuls of batter onto the skillet and flatten, if necessary. Cook on each side for about 3-4 minutes, or until a deep golden brown. Serve with sour cream and salsa on the side.
Rest of the week
Aug 12 Ordered in from ViVetha
Aug 13 Dinner at Q's brother's place
Aug 14 BBQ at home... burgers, carrot slaw, Mikey's peanut butter pie
Aug 15 Zucchini corn pancakes