Coccoli (Crispy Parmigiano Fritters)
Presented by Melt
- 2 cups 00 flour or all purpose flour
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 3/4 cup Parmigiano, grated
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 2 tsp. fresh yeast
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp. distilled vinegar
- Canola oil for frying
For serving (per individual portion):
- 5 tsp. coccoli batter / 5 pc. serving
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 oz. pea tendrils
- 2 oz. prosciutto, sliced thin
- 1 1/2 oz. stracchino cheese*
- 1 tsp. fig balsamic vinegar
Combine together the flour, sugar, salt, and Parmigiano. In a separate bowl, mix together the water and yeast, until the yeast is dissolved into the water. Add the egg and vinegar, then mix together with the dry ingredients using a whisk just until combined. Do not over mix. Transfer into a quart container, then place in the refrigerator for several hours (or overnight) until ready to cook. (Leftover batter may be refrigerated and used the next day.)
Bring the fry oil to 350°F. Using a spoon, gently spoon 5 Coccoli, into the fryer, dipping each spoonful of dough directly into the fryer. (Important: Placing the spoonful of dough into the fryer causes the dough to slip off the spoon.) Fry until golden in color. Remove from the fryer and season with salt and pepper.
On a large plate, layer the prosciutto on the left side of the plate. On the right top corner of the plate make a nest of the pea tendrils, then pile the Coccoli over the greens. Using the small scoop, place the stracchino cheese on the bottom right corner. Drizzle the fig balsamic over the cheese.
*Stracchino, also known as crescenza, is a cheese from Northern Italy that has no rind and a very soft, creamy texture with a mild and delicate flavor. If unavailable, you can substitute fresh mozzarella or mascarpone.
Chef note: To best enjoy as a finger food, put a dab of cheese on a piece of prosciutto and wrap around the coccoli. These are also recommended for cocktail parties.