Archive for September 3rd, 2012

September 3, 2012

Italian Broccoli Fritter Stack

Every once in a while I cook something really, truly, supremely delicious.

It happens about once a year. In 2011 it was the Benedicto Italiano, which to this day is still probably the best thing I’ve ever made. In 2012, it’s this Broccoli Fritter Stack.

I have to give credit where it is due. This dish was inspired by the innovative broccoli fritter recipe over at rock star food blog Smitten Kitchen. Typical fritters are chalk-full of starchy goodness (potatoes, flour, rice, etc.) but these ones are made almost entirely of broccoli, with just enough parmesan and flour to hold them together. It’s the essence of broccoli, with just the right amount of frill.

The ensemble cast is just as important for this recipe, however. The portabello mushroom is simple – seasoned with just a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper – but flavorful, filling and tender. The sausage-infused sauce is slightly sweet, spicy and, most importantly, ruggedly filling. All you really need is something to sop up all the leftover goodies. Ciabatta? Done.

Presentation is always a secondary concern – substance before style – but this dish knocks it out of the park on that count as well. Each layer is vibrant and unique, with basil ribbons on top sealing the deal.

Cook this. Now. You won’t be disappointed.

Italian Broccoli Fritter Stack

  • 1/2 lb Italian sausage (I prefer spicy, but mild is fine)
  • 16 oz marinara sauce
  • 4 portabello mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon pepper
  • Broccoli Parmesan Fritters
  • 2 ciabatta rolls
  • 3-4 large basil leaves
  1. Heat a large non-stick skillet to medium high. Saute the Italian sausage until crispy and lightly browned, approximately 7-10 minutes. Add the marinara and reduce heat to low. Continue to stir periodically.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove the stems from the portabello mushrooms. Divide the olive oil, salt and pepper evenly and apply to the mushrooms. Place the mushrooms in the oven and cook until lightly tender, approximately 12-15 minutes.
  3. Prepare the broccoli parmesan fritters per Smitten Kitchen instructions.
  4. Cut the ciabatta rolls in half and toast lightly in the oven. Lay down a ciabatta roll, portabello mushroom, broccoli fritter and a dollop of sausage-marinara sauce. Top with a handful of basil ribbons and serve.
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