Fritters are found in many cuisines. There are basically three types of fritters. Plain fritters are deep-fried cakes of chou paste or yeast dough. Another type of fritter has bits of meat, seafood, vegetables, or fruits coated with a batter and deep fried. Small cakes of chopped foods mixed with the batter are also called fritters. Sriracha Corn Fritters fit this category.
French beignets and Greek loukoumades are considered sweet fritters. During the late 16th century, the Portuguese and Spanish introduced a batter-frying technique to Japan. This is when tempura was invented.
Indian pakora is a deep-fried cake that contains different types of vegetables. Italian fritto misto has bits of meat, seafood, and/or vegetables fried in a batter.
Throughout China, vegetarian and pork fritters are sold at roadside stands. Banana fritters are popular in some areas of India. Street vendors in Indonesia sell a variety of fritters. In Iran, fritters are made with potatoes or herbs.
Myanmar has some of the most interesting fritters. Burmese fritters can contain onions, chickpeas, potatoes, bean paste, tofu, chayote, or cracklings. These savory fritters are often eaten at breakfast or as a snack with tea.
Filipinos eat egg fritters containing squid or shrimp. South Africans eat pumpkin fritters served with cinnamon sugar. Sometimes British fish and chip restaurants will serve a mushy pea fritter alongside this iconic dish.
There are also flower fritters, which are flowers like daylilies and squash blossoms that are dipped in a batter and fried.
Here in the United States, corn fritters are a Southern specialty. These Sriracha Corn Fritters are quite tasty, and they were a great way to use some of the last sweet corn in our garden. Canned or frozen corn can be substituted for the fresh corn in this recipe.
Sriracha Corn Fritters
¾ cup flour
¼ cup cornmeal
½ teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup corn kernels (thawed if frozen)
¼ cup sour cream
1 tablespoon Sriracha
1/3 cup pale ale
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Canola oil for frying
In a large bowl, mix flour, cornmeal, baking powder, brown sugar, salt, and corn kernels. Stir until well combined.
Make a well in the center and add the sour cream Sriracha, pale ale, lime juice, and cilantro. Stir to combine.
Heat about an inch of oil in a pan. Add ½ tablespoon batter to the oil. (A small cookie scoop works well.) Add about 6 to 8 scoops of batter at a time. Fry until golden brown on all sides, about 5 minutes.
Note: If the fritters cook too quickly on the outside and the inside is still raw, the oil is too hot, or the fritters are too big. Either reduce the heat of the oil or reduce the size of the fritters to fix the problem.