Thursday, July 20, 2006

zucchini blossoms four ways

Step one: Grow zucchini (or buy the flowers at a farmers' market or steal from your neighbor's garden when she's not looking).




Step 2: Stuff blossoms with cheese and pesto or tomatoes, cheese, and artichokes.




Step 3: Dip in batter and deep fry or pan fry.


First, choose one of the following fillings.

Filling #1: Goat Cheese

3 oz goat cheese

3 oz cream cheese

1 Tbsp pesto (or 1-2 Tbsp fresh herbs you have around)

salt and pepper to taste

Filling #2: Italian

1 c. diced tomatoes (fresh or canned, drained)

1/2 c. chopped artichoke hearts

3 tsp minced onion

3 tsp pesto (or 3 Tbsp fresh Italian herbs of your choice)

3 Tbsp shredded mozzarella

3 oz cream cheese

salt and pepper to taste

Next, remove stamens from 8-10 zucchini blossoms and stuff with filling mixture, twisting the tips of the petals together.

Now choose one of the following methods for cooking them.

Pan-Fried:

Mix 3 Tbsp flour, 3 Tbsp cornmeal, and 1 1/2 tsp dried Italian seasoning (or other dried herb blend of your choice). Dip the stuffed blossoms into milk and then the flour mixture. Shake off excess breading. Heat olive oil in skillet and pan fry till brown on both sides (in several batches so as not to crowd the pan). Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with shallot salt (or other seasoned salt blend).

Deep-Fried:

Mix 1/4 c. cornmeal, 1/4 c. flour, 1 egg, 1/4 c. water, 1/4 c. milk, and 1 1/2 tsp dried Italian seasoning (or other dried herb blend of your choice). Stir batter ingredients together and let rest for one hour. Fill a saucepan to a depth of 2 inches with vegetable oil and heat to 375 degrees. Dip blossoms in batter and deep fry till golden. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with shallot salt (or other seasoned salt blend).

I'm approximating some of the quantities here, trying to recreate what I threw together, but this should be pretty close, depending on the size of your flowers. Clearly, you can get inventive with the innards--try other cheeses, other veggies, other herbs. The deep-fried ones are my favorite; they leave the stove a mess, but their texture reminds me of jalapeno poppers or chile rellenos without the heat--but with a flavor explosion inside!

4 Comments:

Blogger lis said...

maybe i'll have to get to the farmer's market early tomorrow and look for zucchini blossoms--looks great.

5:18 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Make sure to use them the same day you buy them, Lis--otherwise they get very, very slimy.

7:12 AM  
Blogger lis said...

didn't find any blossoms at the market--too bad. I'll have to keep looking as lately I keep encountering squash blossom recipes

2:26 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Oops--I left out two ingredients from the deep fried batter. Sorry! I've added in the milk and water now!

2:54 PM  

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