Fried Provolone with Italian Salsa

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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Ingredients

Italian Salsa:

2 cups cherry tomatoes, quartered

1/4 cup finely diced sweet onion

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar 

2 teaspoons kosher salt 

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 

Pinch chile flakes 

Fried Provolone:

Canola oil, for frying

One 16-ounce log provolone, wax removed, sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rounds 

1 cup cornstarch 

1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dredging 

2 cups cold club soda 

2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more for seasoning 

2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Directions

  1. For the salsa: In a medium bowl, add the tomatoes, onions, olive oil, basil, vinegar, salt, black pepper and chile flakes. Toss well, and set aside at room temperature.
  2. For the provolone: Place the provolone rounds on a waxed-paper-lined baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine the cornstarch and flour, then whisk in the club soda and salt until smooth, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. In a large Dutch oven, add 3 to 4 inches canola oil. Heat over medium heat until a deep-frying thermometer inserted in the oil reaches 375 degrees F.
  5. Lightly dredge each piece of the provolone in flour. Working in batches, dip the provolone rounds into the batter, then shake off any excess and place in the hot oil. Fry until lightly browned and puffy on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the provolone and season with some salt. Repeat for the remaining rounds of provolone.
  6. Cut the crispy provolone into wedges and place on a large serving platter. Garnish with the parsley and serve with the Italian salsa spooned over the top or on the side for dipping.
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