As soon as the weather turns a bit chilly or humid, everyone at our home starts craving fried food! Bhajiyas (Fritters) are a hot favorite in pretty much any Indian household during rainy cold days. But you don't really need an excuse to enjoy fried food. It is extremely comforting, and that is enough reason to indulge, at least once in a while!
This weekend we went for a new recipe for fritters. I had to use up the Artisan garlic flavored cheese lying in my refrigerator, so this Fried Cheese Balls recipe caught my eye. Photo by boo_licious. My friend Lisa has another interesting version with Smoked Gouda cheese that she calls Smoked Gouda Cheese Puffs, in case you'd like to try that out.
These cheese fritters are so easy to make, and they are so tasty, you'll be eating away the entire bowl in no time! The crispy exterior with the soft gooey cheesy interior make them perfect finger food, and your kids would especially like them a lot. You can jazz it up by adding chopped onions, maybe some cilantro or basil, even chopped spinach would be great with cheese. Remember to serve them hot, with a side of Ketchup or some dipping sauce, but make sure you leave a generous amount on the side for yourself, or you'll never even get to taste one!
1 cup grated mild cheese or flavored cheese (Gouda works too)
2 tsp flour
1/4 tsp salt
a pinch of cayenne pepper
2 egg whites, stiffly beaten
3/4 cup fine cracker crumbs or bred crumbs
vegetable oil - for frying
Combine the cheese, flour, salt, and cayenne pepper in one bowl and mix well.
Beat the egg whites in a separate bowl; beat until they are stiff, holding peaks, about 2 minutes by spoon and hand.
Now gently add the flour mixture to the egg whites base. Pat the mixture into small balls and roll them in cracker crumbs until thoroughly coated.
Refrigerate these cheese balls for at least 10-15 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a wok. When it is hot enough (drop a small piece of bread and it should float up to the top immediately), you are ready to fry the cheese balls.
Put 3 balls in the hot oil at a time, taking care not to crowd the wok. Fry them over medium-heat until they are evenly golden brown on all sides. Remove and drain them on paper towels.
The cheese will become nice and gooey but due to the egg whites and the cracker crumbs, the Cheese Balls will still hold their shape. Serve them immediately with some Dipping Sauce on the side.
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