GREEK TOMATO FRITTERS, GRILLED GARFISH & TZATZIKI
FOOD & DRINK
SERVES 4 / PREPARATION 30 MINUTES PLUS DRAINING AND SITTING TIME / COOKING 15 MINUTES Greek tomato fritters or keftedes are usually eaten as a snack, but here I’ve made them a more substantial meal served with grilled garfish. Also known as piper, garfish is an underrated fish with sweet flesh. It does have feathery bones, but you could use another oily fish, such as kahawai or mackerel, instead. I grilled the garfish in fig leaves, which protects them from the harsh heat of the grill and imparts flavour, but this isn’t essential. TZATZIKI ½ telegraph cucumber 1 teaspoon sea salt 1 cup thick Greek-style yoghurt 2 tablespoon shredded mint leaves Slice the cucumber in half, remove the seeds and grate. Place in a colander with the salt and drain for 30 minutes. Squeeze out any liquid and put into a bowl with the yoghurt and mint. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper. Set aside. FOR THE TOMATO FRITTERS 5 tomatoes (about 550g), ideally a variety with few seeds such as beef steak or San Marzano 1 small red onion, finely chopped 2 cloves garlic, mashed with a little salt 2 tablespoons finely chopped oregano 2 tablespoons finely chopped mint 2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leafed parsley 1½ cups panko crumbs 2 tablespoons flour 2 eggs, lightly beaten 1 teaspoon sea salt ¼-½ cup olive or sunflower oil for frying Remove and discard any seeds and liquid from the tomatoes, then chop and mix with all the remaining ingredients except the eggs and salt. Allow to sit for 30 minutes then mix in the eggs and salt. Heat the oil in a frying pan, drop large spoonfuls of the batter into the pan and fry on each side for 3-4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and keep warm until ready to serve. FOR THE FISH 12 fig or grape leaves (optional) oil for drizzling 12 garfish, gutted, or 4 oily fish fillets If you’re using leaves, blanch in boiling water for 1 minute (this is necessary only if they’re older, tougher leaves). Oil the fish, season with salt and wrap in the leaves (the fish doesn’t need to be completely covered). Grill on a barbecue hot plate for 2-3 minutes or until just cooked through. Serve with the tomato fritters and the tzatziki. Don’t eat the fig leaves (though you could eat grape leaves if you’ve blanched them). WINE A bright, lighter style of pinot noir, such as the Te Kairanga Pinot Noir 2015.