Friday, June 17, 2011

How To Make ... Fried Zucchini Blossoms

So you picked up some zucchinis from the farmer's market (or picked some from your garden - very resourceful, you!), and if you were really, really lucky some still had a blossom attached to the end.  And maybe you picked them off and tossed them in your compost bin and didn't think anything of it.
Oh, if you only knew what you just threw away!
A few years ago I read Marlena di Blasi's book A Thousand Days In Venice, and it pretty much rocked my socks.  She describes a festival celebrating the lowly zucchini blossom, and tasting fried ones for the first time ever.  Of course I had to try it too (SN:  The same thing happened when I read La Cucina.  I started making timballo and now it is a family staple - but I digress)
You'll love this for so many reasons - it utilizes a completely forgotten about product of your garden, it's quick and easy, and they are so good you can never quite make enough.  The last picture, of the plate of them?  Yeah.  devoured by yours truly in about a minute.
So to start, you get a big ol' heap of blossoms.  Try to take both female (the ones growing on the squash) and male (the ones growing on stalks, if some ignorant ass bunny hasn't made off with them yet)

Here's the thing : you can't really wash them.  If you do they get really soggy and don't work.  I shake mine and brush them with paper towels to get off any dirt or buggies.  Take comfort in the fact whatever is on there isn't nearly as bad for you as the can of soda you consume without thinking twice.

Mix up the batter.  There is some kind of ratio here that I have forgotten.  I put two big spoonfuls of flour in a bowl, then pour on club soda until it's the consistency of thick cream.  

 Whisk it up!

Line up your ingredients like so, and heat vegetable oil in a big skillet over medium heat.  You want enough oil that they won't stick, so don't be shy.  They are worth it.

When your oil is hot, dip the blossoms in batter, and then shake off nearly all of it.  These need just the slightest coating.  Again, soggy blossoms = no.

Into ze pan!

I find it's easiest to flip these with a pair of tongs.

  While doing this, scald your finger with a flying drop of oil, then realize you own a perfectly good splatter screen

When the blossoms are all nice and golden-y brown, drain them on a double-thickness of towels, and sprinkle liberally with salt.

Wolf them all down and get yelled at by your 5 year old because you didn't save her any.
There are all kinds of delicious variations you can make here - last year we stuffed them with blue cheese and fresh jalapenos from the garden, and very nearly died of ecstasy.  They would also be yummy with white bean dip inside ... but truly, they are amazing just like this.
Peace, love, and produce! :-)



  1. Thank you so much! I have heard of these being eaten but never knew how to make them. Though I think I'll put the splatter screen over the pan before I'm burned. I know, I can be a real wimp sometimes. ;-)

  2. Looks yummy! I've always wanted to try them.


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