There comes a moment every summer when the markets are suddenly awash in yellows and greens, as the summer squash harvest begins. But what begins as glee can turn to glut, and we find ourselves struggling to use up all of the zucchini, cousas, zephyrs, and pattypans (all summer squash varieties!) that looked so cute at the farmstand.

In times of squash surplus, we made fritters. You can make a batch with any member of the summer squash family—or a mix of different varieties—and serve them as a summery starter (perhaps with some yogurty dip) or top them with dressed salad greens for a light lunch or supper. Our recipe is similar potato latkes, with the addition of cornmeal for extra crunch.

Field Notes:


The most important step of this recipe is wringing the squash dry after it’s been salted. A clean kitchen towel is your best tool for this: mound the squash in the middle of the towel, then gather up the ends and twist and squeeze until you can’t get another drop out.


Like a good latke, a craggy fritter (vs. a uniform disc) will give you better texture in the end. Instead of scooping the fritters with a measuring cup, we use a fork to drop mounds of the squash mixture into the skillet, then gently press it flat with a spatula—not unlike making a smash burger.


Go ahead and make a big batch of fritters; you can freeze the leftovers in a plastic bag and reheat them in a warm skillet.


Cast Iron Zucchini Fritters

Yield: 4 servings


1 pound zucchini (1 large or 2 medium)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg
2 tablespoons medium-ground cornmeal
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ cup canola oil
½ cup crumbled feta cheese
1 tablespoon chopped chives



Using the large holes on a box grater, grate the zucchini into a colander. Sprinkle with a couple pinches of salt (about ½ teaspoon) and toss. Let the zucchini stand for 10 to 15 minutes, then transfer to a clean kitchen towel and wring very dry.


In a medium bowl, beat the egg. Add the zucchini and stir to combine with the egg. Add the cornmeal, flour, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper.


Heat the oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat until it shimmers. Drop ¼-cup mounds of the zucchini mixture into the oil and gently flatten with a spatula. Working in batches if necessary, fry the fritters until browned on the bottom, 3 to 4 minutes, then use a spatula to flip the fritters over and continue frying until browned on the other side, 3 to 4 minutes longer. (The fritters can be made up to 1 hour ahead and kept warm in a 200°F oven.)


Transfer the fritters to a serving platter. Sprinkle with the crumbled feta and chives and serve.

Cast Iron Cookware that Makes Clean-up Easy

The key to reliable, use-it-every-day cast iron is seasoning: a smooth, well-seasoned skillet will clean up with just a quick wash, and produce natural non-stick performance every time. Apply a dab of Field Seasoning Oil after cleaning to protect your skillet and build durable non-stick seasoning.