On the heels of my last post, I wanted to share a lovely recipe that uses another part of the zucchini plant – its blossom. I’ve had so much fun (with food again;-) working the flower into a number of dishes, from soup to quesadillas, and while many know preparations as deep fried, this one is gently sauteed…
Fresh from the farmers’ market, squash blossoms should look firm and should be just slightly open. Hopefully you plan to use them right away, as they’re quite perishable. When you get them home put them in the crisper section of the refrigerator until it comes time to cook them. Then wash them gently, pat them dry, and remove the pistils.
The trick to working with these flowers is their delicate nature. One small tug and the flower is torn. So be careful when ‘stuffing’ the inside and give it a little Zen treatment. It’s beauty and flavor will pay you in kind.
Sauteed Squash Blossoms – Serves 4
These are pretty messy but very light. If you want more structure, you could opt for this battered version.
6-8 squash blossoms (I used zucchini)
6-8 TB fresh goat or ricotta cheese, room temperature
Sliced almonds, toasted
Mint leaves or basil, chopped
Salt and pepper
Gently open the flower and insert a generous tablespoon of soft cheese. Try to twist the top of the flower shut. (Did I mention gently?)
Heat olive oil and place blossoms in saute pan. Cook for about 3 minutes, the cheese will start to ooze outside. With a wide spatula, turn them over and finish sauteing for another 2-3 minutes.
Garnish with chopped almonds and herb of your choice. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.