Hush puppies are easy to make. They are one of those food that require little effort to produce delicious satisfying results. They are made with a cornmeal/flour based batter. In my hush puppies, there is a particular ingredient that you will not find in many others—ricotta cheese. Adding it to pancake batter is a common practice because it adds lightness to the pancake. I thought that the same principle should apply to hush puppies and decided to incorporate in the batter.
With high hopes, I tested out my theory, and I was pleased to find that the texture was on point. The outside was crispy and inside was soft and light, exactly as I had hoped. To add a punch of flavor and interest, I stuffed these fried golden nuggets with smoked bacon cheddar cheese. Delish!
Smoked Bacon Cheddar Hush Puppies:
8 oz. smoked bacon Cheddar cheese (I use Cabot)
3 cups or more vegetable oil for frying
3/4 cup cornmeal
3/4 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup milk1/4 cup ricotta cheese
Note: This recipe requires a small ice cream scoop with spring-loaded scoop (1 tablespoon or half ounce capacity) to form batter.
Cut cheese into twenty four 3/4-inch cubes. Make sure they are smaller than the diameter of the ice cream scoop.
Add oil to a 9-inch frying pan. Preheat to 360 degrees F.
Combine cornmeal, flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk egg, milk, and ricotta cheese. Stir into dry ingredients until just combined.
Cook in three batches. Scoop batter up with ice cream scoop. Insert cheese, avoiding hitting the sides of the ice cream scoop. Cover any exposed cheese with batter. Drop into hot oil. Cook for about 3 minutes or until golden brown, turning hush puppies to cook evenly. Drain on paper towels. Serve immediately. Makes 24.