Zucchini is one of, if not, my favourite vegetable. I also love a good sandwich, so putting zucchini into a sandwich was a no brainer. The fried zucchini strips and whipped ricotta with basil and mint, yes, whipped ricotta with basil and mint, turns this sandwich into a delectable delight. The addition of bomba sauce and drizzle of balsamic glaze has made this one of my favourite sandwiches to eat.
FRIED ZUCCHINI SANDWICH WITH WHIPPED BASIL AND MINT RICOTTA
Recipe by Mark Calaminici | Food Loves Company
250g or 1 1/2 cups of fresh ricotta, drained
Salt, to taste
Freshly cracked pepper, to taste
Zest of 1/2 a lemon
Nutmeg, to taste
1 tbsp. Heavy cream or milk
5 basil leaves, sliced into a chiffonade
5 mint leaves, sliced into a chiffonade
2 small-medium zucchinis, cut into 1/4” or less strips
1/2 cup all purpose flour
Chili flakes, to taste
1 egg, whisked
Parmigiano-reggiano, finely grated, to taste
1 cup Panko or regular breadcrumbs
Oil, for frying
Two buns, your choice, toasted or untoasted
Balsamic reduction (glaze), to taste
Bomba sauce, to taste
1. Place the drained ricotta in a food processor. Add lemon zest, heavy cream, basil, mint, nutmeg and season with salt and freshly cracked pepper. Pulse until you reach a smooth texture, like whip cream. Depending on how thick the ricotta is, you may have to add a bit more cream. Taste and adjust with any seasonings. Set aside.
2. Get the dredge and bread station ready. Place flour onto a plate and season with salt, freshly cracked pepper and chilli flakes. Mix to combine. In a shallow bowl beat the egg and Parmigiano-Reggiano. You can add a splash of water or milk to the egg mixture to help loosen the mixture. In the last plate add the breadcrumbs, Parmigiano-Reggiano and season with salt and freshly cracked pepper if the breadcrumbs are unseasoned. Mix to combine. Working one at a time dip zucchini slice in flour to coat and dip into beaten egg mixture to coat. Place in the breadcrumbs until fully coated, pressing down firmly to set the breadcrumbs. Place zucchini slices on a sheet pan or rack until ready to fry. You can place in the fridge as well. This will help with the coating to stick and help the zucchinis firm up.
3. Fill a frying pan on high heat with enough oil to cover half of the zucchini slice. Once the oil is hot, place the zucchini slices into the oil away from you. Fry for about 1-2 minutes per side, depending on how thick or until browned and crispy. Remove to a plate lined with paper towel and season with a little flaky salt.
4. Lay bottom half of bun on a flat work surface. Place zucchini slices on top. Add a drizzle of balsamic glaze. Top with whipped ricotta and top with bomba sauce. Eenjoy.