Fried Zucchini Blossoms
“Isn’t it too small?” my painting teacher called out when I tried to harvest zucchini blossoms from her garden after class. “Is it?” “It will get larger than this?” After realizing that she was referring to the green parts of the vegetable, I explained that I needed flowers only. “For what?” she asked. “To eat” I said and then answered her question of “How?”. “I think I’m going to deep fry them” “Really?…that’s nice” she said.
She consumes lots of fresh fruits and vegetable and I don’t think she has ever deep fried anything in her life. She is not a health nut but conscious about what she eats and very disciplined. The slender 5 foot 7 inches figure she maintains attests to that. On the day of painting class, she steep mint leaves she dried herself. Conversation flows easily over sipping tea. When I didn’t have breakfast, because I was late getting there, then she brings up a bowl of cereal and milk, toast or banana for me to eat. One time she made me a tall glass of a oatmeal-yogurt-whatever health shake that was really …something … wow powerful stuff!
I happened to read in the Oregonian FoodDay about squash blossoms a few weeks ago was interesting…squash blossom can be either male or female…wow I didn’t know that. I picked whichever available in the garden so good thing both genders are edible! Then the article continued to say, Their extremely perishable nature, blossoms are fleeting delicacy…Lucky! I was in the right place at the right time. Here, I adapted this recipe by Londoner and owner of River Café, Ruth Rogers in August(2012) issue of bon appetit.
Ingredients for batter-Makes 8-12 blossoms
- 1/2 cup all purpose flower
- 2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 6 Tablespoons warm water
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 3 egg whites
- Add warm water slowly to the flour mixture and whisk after each addition to make pancake batter consistency. Add more water if necessary.
- Add salt, stir and let rest uncover for 1-2 hours at room temperature.
- Beat egg white in a medium bowl to peak but do not beat till dry.
- Add 1/3rd of egg white into the flour mixture and whisk gently to loosen up the batter.
- Fold in the rest of egg whites with rubber spatula until just incorporated.
Deep fry the blossoms-prepare a couple sheets of paper towels on a large plate.
- Vegetable oil
- 8-12 squash blossoms (I didn’t but you’re supposed to remove stamens from the male blossom flowers-Honey, what is stamens? Don’t worry, it’s too late anyway said my husband).
- Heat oil in a large, heavy, deep skillet at medium heat. Oil should be at least 1 inch deep.
- Holding the stem of the blossom, dip it in batter, let the excess batter drip back into the bowl.
- Fry until golden and crisp-about 3 or 4 minutes. Put them on prepared plate to absorb excess oil.
- Season with salt, serve hot.
Grandson of above vendor just waking up from nap. He reminds me of my grandson. He is adorable too (not as much as my grandson though)!