baking history :: corn fritters {life}


There were so many ways that I didn't fit in to the small conservative southern town that I grew up in. Really, too many to count. The story I started to tell you was about a memory I had of the summer of 1980 and my mom wearing a tee shirt commemorating the Moscow Olympics. It was shortly after the decision to boycott and she was chastised by a neighbor of ours (do you remember that mom? maybe you have more insight!). And then I thought, huh. The more things change, the more they stay the same, right? Not that we're going to boycott the Olympics, but Russia again?

Anyway, I digress. One of the ways my family was different was that my parents shared cooking duties. My dad handled two nights a week and he was responsible for the Spam and brown sugar glaze that I spoke fondly of in Rooth's blog last week.

He was also responsible for corn fritters. People, I love corn fritters. I don't know for sure how he got them to our table (were they made from scratch? were they frozen and then baked or pan fried?), but it seemed we had them only rarely, never enough.

I loved corn fritter night.  

Now I would gladly heat up pre-made frozen corn fritters on a weeknight; I'm not proud. If only I could find them. For a little while there our grocery store carried something corn fritter-like, but I think it was meant as a chicken nugget substitute, so: not the same. I had no choice to but to try to make my own.

Corn Fritters, adapted from

1/2 - 3/4 bag of Trader Joes Frozen Roasted Corn or 3 ears, husks and silks removed
1/3 cup milk
1 large egg
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 - 1/2 cup corn meal
1/4 - 1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Vegetable oil
sour cream
maple syrup

Preheat oven to 200º. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

If you are using fresh corn, remove the kernels from the cob by standing cob on end in a bowl and slicing downward with a sharp knife. Add the following ingredients to the bowl of corn (fresh or frozen): milk, egg, sugar, baking powder, salt and pepper. Fold in the corn meal and flour, starting with 1/4 cup each and adding more until the mixture resembles a fairly dense batter. It shouldn't be runny.

Coat the bottom of a nonstick skillet with vegetable oil. On medium heat, drop batter in tablespoons into the oil, but don't crowd the pan. You'll probably need to do this in two batches. Fry the fritters until golden brown, flipping once. Roughly 2-4 minutes per side.

Place the cooked fritters on the baking sheet and keep warm in the oven while you cook the other fritters.  

Serve with sour cream or maple syrup (my personal favorite, because salty/sweet, duh).