The gastronomy in Calabria is second to none. I have tried lots of different street food in southern Italy and for me, the fried aubergine fritters are by far the best. They are usually served as an appetiser or eaten at many different food festivals. Perfect for street food as you can walk around and eat them without making a mess. Words cannot describe the flavour you will experience. You can have a go at making them yourselves or wait till you get to Calabria to taste the real authentic ones.
Fried aubergine fritters are the best street food in Calabria
If you have the opportunity to go to one of the local’s homes like I did, you will be in for a surprise. They usually want you to help them in the kitchen. I suppose this way you can see exactly how they are made. They are so easy to make and filling. They are always on the table in a Calabrian home.
Aubergine is a very important ingredient in Calabrian cuisine. This is another vegetable that grows well in southern Italy. The Calabrians make so many different dishes with aubergines. In the past, they had to live off their land and they still do. You can see these aubergines as well as many other vegetables growing in their gardens. You can read more on Calabrian cuisine here.
Calabrians usually make these fried aubergine fritters with leftover ingredients. I usually feel full after eating two of them. If you cannot wait until you visit this amazing region then here is one of the recipes for this incredible street food.
There are different versions of making them, but you will find the main ingredients used below.
Polpette di melenzane recipe
Ingredients 4 servings
- 1 medium aubergine
- 100g grated pecorino
- 1 egg
- Half a garlic clove
- A handful of parsley
- Salt and pepper
- 100g of bread crumbs and 2 slices of stale bread
- Oil for frying
Easy to make street food
Soak the stale bread in a little water for 10 minutes. Slice the aubergine into long thin strips. Heat the water and when the water is boiling, add some salt and then put the aubergine strips in the pot and boil for about 10 minutes. Drain them thoroughly and wait until they become cold. Next put the aubergines into a food processor or bowl.
Make sure you have squeezed out all the water from the bread. Once it is completely wrung out, you can add the breadcrumbs, pecorino cheese, garlic, parsley, egg, salt, pepper and blend or stir until well mixed.
You then take some of the mixture and form it into oval shapes. Dip them into a little flour so they form a nice brown crust. Fry them in frying oil, preferably peanut oil until golden brown on all sides. Pat them dry with kitchen paper.
They can be eaten hot or cold. I personally think they taste better cold. If you try this recipe, let us know what you think in the comments below.
You can also see another version of this local delicacy in the video. I like this video as it shows you step by step how to make them. It is a very easy dish to make and extremely tasty.