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This is my entry for this month’s Royal Foodie Joust!
The ingredients for this month’s challenge are:
chipotle peppers, zucchini and buttermilk.

The three items were picked by Marye of Apron Strings and Simmering Things who was the Joust’s winner last month.

My inspiration for this dish is my love of spicy condiments and my love of all things Mediterranean. Harissa is a North African spicy pepper relish, often found in many forms on the streets of Tunisia. I love Harissa and usually get around to making it once a year. It is a wonderful treat gotten with quite a bit of culinary effort and time, but it is worth it. I keep telling myself that I really need to make a bigger batch next time, but always forget! Maybe next year!

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this dish! The fritters are nice and crispy on the outside and deliciously creamy on the inside, topped with the spicy Harissa and the cooling Greek yogurt it is a perfect combination!

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If you want to join us this month for the Royal Foodie Joust, Click Here
for the details or just stop by the Leftover Queen’s Forum!

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INGREDIENTS:

For The Harissa:
6 chipotle peppers
3 dried pasilla or ancho chilies
1 dried really hot pepper
2 TBS coriander seeds
1 TBS caraway seeds
sea salt to taste
5 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped
extra virgin olive oil as needed
½ teaspoon ground cumin

For The Fritters:
1 ¼ C. Buttermilk
2 TBS Butter, softened
1 ¼ C. Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
½ tsp Baking Soda
½ tsp Salt

2 large zucchini, shredded
2 cipolline onions, shredded
olive oil for cooking

1 8 oz. container of Greek yogurt

METHOD:

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To make the Harissa:

Cover the dried chilies with hot water and set aside to soften (about 20 minutes). Puncture each chili first to make sure it will sink and therefore all of the chili will soften.

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Meanwhile in a mortar and pestle pound the coriander and caraway with about ¼ tsp of salt until you have created a grainy powder which is soft. Add the garlic and pound into a paste. You can also do this step in a food processor. If you do this step in the food processor, after it is ground, return the paste to the mortar. If you mortar is small then use a larger glass bowl.

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Drain chilies and discard the seeds and membranes. Wearing some plastic or latex gloves, using a knife scrape the pulp inside into the mortar.

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Pound with the pestle to create a coarse paste. Pound in ¼ cup of oil, a tablespoon at a time, then add the cumin. Taste and add salt if desired. The sauce should be thick but spread able.

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You can store the leftovers (if there are any!) in a jar, smooth down the top with a spoon and pour olive oil on top. Keeps in the fridge for about 3 months. Makes about 1 cup of Harissa.

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To make the fritters:

Pre-Heat a non-stick pan to medium-high heat and heat about 1 TBS of olive oil.

In a large bowl mix buttermilk, butter, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the shredded zucchini and onions to the batter and stir until incorporated. Make into patties and cook until browned on one side. Flip once and cook on the other side.

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Serve with a dollop of Harissa and a dollop of Greek yogurt. Enjoy!