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Monday, March 18, 2013

Fried Mozzarella Sticks

There is more than a bit of irony in the fact that a couple of steaks were sitting on my counter when I went in to the computer to look for a recipe.  While there I hit my work email and got my March Secret Recipe Club assignment.  A vegan blog.  Called We Heart Vegan.  OMG what would I do???  Of all things, I am absolutely not vegan.  Have no desire to ever cook vegan.  But, the whole idea of the Secret Recipe Club is to meet other bloggers and hopefully try things you'd not have tried on your own.  So, I soldiered on.  Read the recipes.  Looked at the photos.  And, realized all Brittany was doing was substituting vegan ingredients for the everyday ingredients I use.  I could do this.  I could substtute my everyday ingredients and take a vegan recipe and turn it into something I'd make regularly.  Reverse engineering if you will. Now, please don't get me wrong.  I understand why some folks are vegan and vegetarian and pescatarian and etc.  I'm just not one of those folks. 

I printed half a dozen recipes.  The Roman Style Artichoke Hearts looked amazing.  But they were a SRC post.  Bummer.  Ditto the Basil Pesto Hummus and the Chipotle Kale Chips.  Ah ha!  Fried mozzarella strips.  My kind of food.  One of those things I had in the freezer when I was single.  A jar of pizza sauce and a few fried mozzarella strips and I had dinner.  How much fun would it be to make these for myself?  Oh, you mean I need to share with Connie?  Ok, fine.  You're right.  I do love him.  And, I do try to share.  I've even showed him where the box of mint meltaways from Marianne is. 

The first batch was very good.  Not much to look at but very good.  I decided to freeze the second batch overnight and see how that worked.  Well, not so well.  I think two things happened.  One, my oil wasn't hot enough to start with and two, I put too many frozen mozzarella sticks in all at once.  I think next time I'll use a saucepan and fry just a couple at a time and deep fry them.  The flavors were FABULOUS!  The photo though tells the tale.  Way too melty.  Brittany's photo is so much better.  Here's where you can hop over to her blog and see her original recipe:  Mozzarella Sticks.

Here's how to make them:

Mozzarella Sticks

1 10oz block mozzarella cheese
vegetable oil for frying

for the batter:
1/2 c flour
1/2 c water
1 T cornmeal
1 T cornstarch
1/2 t garlic powder

for the bread crumbs:
1 c panko
1/2 t salt
1/2 t parsley
1/2 t freshly ground black pepper
1 t Italian seasoning
1/2 t garlic powder
1/2 t onion powder
1/2 t dried basil
Marinara sauce for dipping (we use Rao's because it's the best in our book)


Combine the batter ingredients and mix well. 

You'll want the mixture to have the consistency of pancake batter so add water accordingly.  Use a wide, shallow bowl.

In another wide, shallow bowl, combine the bread crumb ingredients.  Mix well.

Cut the mozzarella into sticks.  About 1/2" per side is good. 

Dip the sticks into the batter then roll them into the crumbs.  Lay them on a baking rack.  Once all of the sticks are coated, pop the rack into your freezer for at least an hour.

Heat your oil.  It has to be REALLY hot and you don't want to add too many sticks at once.  Fry the sticks for about six minutes then flip them and fry until they're evenly browned. 

Serve with marinara sauce.

Adapted from We Heart Vegan.  Thank you Brittany for such an enjoyable recipe!  I'll be back to try the others :-)

Now, if you'd like to see what the other folks made for Secret Recipe Club, here's where you start:


Debra Eliotseats said...

I think these look pretty darn good! I just saw your coriander and avocado dressing at Tandy's site. I guess I missed that the first time around.

You did great with the vegan site! :)

Melissa said...

These look amazing! I've never thought to make my own mozzarella sticks--great choice :)

Our Eating Habits said...

These look mighty fine to me. I can never say no to fried cheese!

Jen @JuanitasCocina said...

These look fabulous! I've always wanted to make my own mozz sticks!

The Mom Chef said...

They may be a little melty, but oh, my gosh, the breading looks amazing (both the ingredient list and the finished sticks). The cheese is always delicious, but a good breading makes or breaks the sticks.

Deanna - Teaspoon of Spice said...

These really sound delicious! Can just imagine dipping them in tomato sauce.

Liz Berg said...

Oh, boy, I could make these my dinner, too! Yum, yum! When I was single, popcorn was easily a were more well rounded than I was :)

Kate said...

And, Liz, I'm still a lot more round than you... I need to spend more time on the treadmill and less at the desk! But, enough about my hips - lol. These were the tastiest mozzarella sticks EVER. Yes, Christiane, you are so right - the breading would be amazing on just about anything.

Lisa {Authentic Suburban Gourmet } said...

What a great recipe and looks super tasty. One of my favorite snacks even though it is not good for you. Looks delish. Glad to be part of SRC group C with you!

Lavender and Lime ( said...

vegan food can be challenging - but these sound great!

Veronica Miller said...

Oh yes, I would totally call that dinner, even if too melty. Yum!

Veronica Gantley said...

I love cheese sticks. I have never made my own. This looks wonderful. My mouth is watering.

Feast on the Cheap said...

Mozz sticks are totally my weakness!

Rhonda said...

String cheese makes a perfect fried mozz stick, maybe you wouldn't have such a melty problem? Truth is, I wouldn't care. I'd make myself sick eating them. I remember when I got We Heart Vegan, I had the same feeling, but it's good to go meatless once in awhile.

Cinnamon Freud said...

Fried mozzarella sticks are classic childhood treat, would love to try making them at home

Anonymous said...

Looks great!! So glad you enjoyed it!


Kirstin said...

These look yummy. Someone may have already mentioned this, but try freezing the sticks ahead of time. I made some baked ones a month or so ago. After slicing the cheese (I used string cheese) I froze them before breading. I think next time I'll try your batter because my egg/milk mixture would freeze on the sticks so it was hard for the bread crumbs to stick. Freezing them keeps them from melting too much.

I'm a fellow SRC member, group D

Marie said...

I love fried mozzarella sticks and can never resist ordering them when we go out to eat. It will be nice to be able to make homemade ones!