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Fried Stuffed Zucchini Blossoms

Makes 16 blossoms

Fried Stuffed Zucchini Blossoms

 

Harvesting zucchini blossoms is a great way of controlling the amount of summer squash in the garden, and my local farm stands always have piles of them for sale. I usually pass them over, but then, in the same week, two friends of mine, Barbara Caccavella and Marguerite Scandiffio, separately rhapsodized about how their Italian-American families fried up piles of blossoms every summer.

To avoid deep-frying indoors over a hot stove, fry them in batches in an electric skillet outdoors and serve them, hot and crisp, right out of the pan.

Batter

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/4 cups club soda, as needed
 
  • 16 zucchini blossoms
  • 1/2 cup ricotta
  • 4 teaspoons finely chopped fresh basil
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed through a press
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil, for deep-frying

1. To make the batter, using a fork, stir the flour and salt in a bowl to combine. Gradually whisk in the club soda to make a batter-there should be a few lumps of flour. Let stand 10 minutes to thicken slightly.

2. Using a small knife, cut a slit down the side of each zucchini blossom, and remove the pistil from inside each blossom. (If a blossom tears, don't worry.) Mix the ricotta, basil, and garlic in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Using a small spoon (a demitasse spoon works well), insert a heaping spoonful of the ricotta mixture inside each blossom through the slit. Be sure that the cheese filling is completely enclosed by the blossom. Transfer the blossoms to a platter.

3. Place a wire cake rack on a rimmed baking sheet. Pour enough oil into a large skillet to come halfway up the sides. Heat over high heat until the oil reaches 360°F on a deep-frying thermometer. One at a time, holding the blossom by the stem, dip the blossom into the batter and remove, letting excess batter drip back into the bowl. There should be only a light coating of batter. Place in the oil and fry, turning once, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. fry the blossoms in batches to avoid crowding them in the skillet. Using a wire skimmer, transfer the blossoms to the cake rack to drain. Serve hot.

 
  • from:
    Summer Gatherings
    Casual Food to Enjoy with Family and Friends
  • by Rick Rodgers
  • Morrow Cookbooks, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, 2008
  • $17.95
  • ISBN-10: 0061438502
  • ISBN-13: 9780061438509
  • Recipe reprinted by permission.

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This page created August 2008


 


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