Friday, May 14, 2010

Fried Squash Blossoms

Here's what Farmer John had for us this week in Silver Lake:

Squash blossoms
Green chard
Russian kale
Collard greens
Red and green lettuce
Tat soi

Squash blossoms are one of the great delights of spring and summer. Their vibrant yellow color belies a mild and delicate flavor. There are many elaborate and delicious preparations for stuffed squash blossoms, but here is a very simple recipe for fried squash blossoms that takes mere minutes to prepare.

1 egg
1/4 C flour
1/4 - 1/2 C club soda or beer, if you prefer
1/4 t salt
pepper to taste
squash blossoms
canola oil for frying

1. In a small bowl, whisk the egg then add the flour, club soda (or beer), and salt until mostly combined. The batter can be a little lumpy, but it should be thin, not thick. Add a little pepper to taste.

2. Rinse and dry the squash blossoms. Carefully remove the pistil or stamen. Cut the stem to about 3/4 inch.

3. Pour about 1/4 - 1/2 inch of oil in a heavy skillet and heat to frying temperature (about 350 degrees). You can check the readiness of the oil by flicking a drop of the batter into it. If it sits at the bottom of the pan, the oil is not yet hot enough. But if it rises to the top and starts frying, the batter is ready.

4. Work in small batches depending on the size of your pan. Dip a squash blossom in the batter, coat it well, let the excess drip off, then pop it in the pan with the hot oil. Don't crowd the squash blossoms. Let them get golden brown on one side, then turn them over and brown the other side.

5. When golden brown, remove the squash blossoms from the oil and let them drain on paper towel. Serve immediately.

You can serve the squash blossoms on their own or in a small pool of marinara sauce or make a lovely basil cream sauce if you want to get fancy.

In any event, if you have squash in your garden, pick the blossoms liberally lest you be overwhelmed with squash later. Then you can enjoy this delicacy often.



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