Updated: Jul 13
National Corn Fritters Day on July 16th encourages us to fry up a batch of these crispy, flavorful bites of corn and batter! Make them with fresh corn and the celebration will be even better!
These bright crispy morsels make great additions to summer barbecues and backyard gatherings. The main ingredients include corn, meal, egg, milk, and butter. While they may have originated in the south, corn fritters can easily be changed up with peppers, onions, or herbs to give them regional and seasonal flair.
When paired with other vegetables and a pan-fried fish filet, corn fritters added to a lightly toasted bun create a unique fish sandwich. Don’t look at corn fritters as just a side dish, but a functional part of a complete meal.
History of Corn Fritters.
In order to understand the history of Corn Fritters Day, you really need to understand the history of corn fritters. The website Days of the Year says this snack is savory and sweet, and it has its origins in Native American cuisine. However, not only are these treats popular in the South of the United States, but they are also known in Indonesia as well, where they are referred to as bakwan jagung or perkedel jagung. The ingredients do differ, though, as we will explain.
Native Americans have been using maize, which is ground corn, as food for thousands of years – long before explorers from Europe came to the New world. In Pre-Columbian Americas, corn-based products were considered staple foods. This includes the likes of cornbread, arepa, and corn flatbread. Deep drying techniques were not used by Native Americans at this time, though, as ample supplies of cooking oil were needed, as well as equipment that was able to handle oil being cooked at extremely high temperatures.
When European settlers came to America, they started to learn about different processes and recipes for corn dishes. They then started to make their own variations of cornmeal-based dishes, including European breads. The corn fritter was invented in the South of the United states. This is a cuisine that is known for having a lot of deep fried foods. Of course, the most famous being Southern fried chicken!
In South America, traditional corn fritters will use melted butter, milk, flour, egg, and corn kernels. They can be baked, shallow fried, and deep fried. They can also be served with cream, honey, fruit, or jam. Some people also make them with creamed corn, after which they are baked and served with maple syrup.
But what about the Asian version of this popular treat? On the other side of the world, it was in the late 16th century that maize seeds made their way into Southeast Asia from America. This happened through Portuguese and Spanish traders.
In Indonesia, with the tropical climate, the plant thrived. Soon, it was a staple food for the southeastern and central parts of Indonesia, which did not get a lot of rain. This is because wet rice requires much more water than corn did. Palm oil and coconut oil have been essential elements of the cuisine in Indonesia for centuries.
Therefore, palm oil was used to deep fry the corn and other ingredients. This technique was taken from Portuguese colonists. This resulted in Indonesia creating their own version of the corn fritter, which is known as bakwan jagung ro perkedel jagung.
Celebrate Corn Fritter Day.
Corn Fritters Day has been created to encourage you to fry up a batch of these tasty and crispy bites of batter and corn. To really make the most of this date, we definitely recommend using fresh corn. It really does make a difference! These crispy morsels of foodness always make great additions to backyard gatherings and barbecues.
Make your fritters small, and they become appetizers. When there’s a bumper crop of sweet corn, be sure to freeze some for a taste of summer during the winter. These corn fritters will brighten up a gloomy, cold day.
Shop Morton Williams.
Visit us for all ingredients especially fresh corn and an assortment of oils. Visit us or shop online for home delivery.
Here is a list of ingredients:
3 cups corn kernels
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup heavy cream
Vegetable oil, for frying
Sliced scallions, for serving
Sour cream or garlic aioli, for serving
In a large bowl, stir together the corn kernels, flour, sugar, baking powder, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
Stir in the eggs and heavy cream until the batter is well-combined.
Line a plate with paper towels. Coat the bottom of a large sauté pan with vegetable oil and place it over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, scoop 2- to 3-tablespoon mounds of the corn batter into the pan, spreading it lightly into a flat, circular shape. Cook the fritters for 2 to 3 minutes, then flip them once and cook them an additional 3 minutes until they’re golden brown and cooked through. Transfer the fritters to the paper towel-lined plate, season them immediately with salt and repeat the cooking process with the remaining batter, adding more oil to the pan as needed.
Garnish the corn fritters with scallions and serve them with sour cream or garlic aioli for dipping.