You know this post was inevitable, frying zucchini blossoms. The responses to my previous post has been overwhelming and they have included suggestions from many readers as to how they cook their zucchini blossoms. The most common response was frying them. Some fried the blossoms with no filling, many with a filling.
Some simply shallow-fried the blossoms in oil, others with a basic beer batter or a lighter batter (more on this in a bit). The most common filling for zucchini blossoms appears to be cheese….many different types of cheeses. Frankly, you can stuff the blossoms with practically anything you want but cheese is good – real good!
On the topic of the batter: zucchini blossoms are delicate. The petals are thin, the flavour mild and they are subject to whatever flavour the cook wills upon them. I opted for a lighter batter, one that didn’t contain beer in it. Instead, I went for a club soda-based batter that is combine with flour, corn starch and the indispensable, anise-flavoured Greek aperitif – Ouzo.
This wonderful recipe comes courtesy of cookbook author and Greek food authority, Aglaia Kremezi. The recipe for this Ouzo Batter comes from Aglaia’s latest book, Mediterranean Hot & Spicy. After having dipped my stuffed zucchini blossoms in this batter, I loved the aroma and flavour from the Ouzo, the light colour and texture and the east with which the batter came together. I had to email Aglaia and share this kitchen success and thank her for a wonderful batter recipe. She was not surprised…this Ouzo batter is very popular with her guests that attend her culinary classes.
Before I share the recipe, let me show you the various fillings I used for the zucchini blossoms: four savory and one even one sweet filling as a teaser until my next post!
Here’s a blossom with filled with sun-dried tomato and a cube of Feta cheese.
I had some leftover batter, lots of blossoms too! I was feeling adventurous, and was hankering for something sweet. I mashed some Manouri cheese with some Greek honey and filled a few more blossoms in what would be a quirky dessert that was finished off with more honey drizzled on top, chopped walnuts and a dusting of icing sugar and cinnamon.
Do you want the recipe for the sweet zucchini blossoms or is this straight enough for you? Let me know.
(batter adapted from Aglaia Kremezi)
15-20 zucchini blossoms
filling of choice (mashed Feta and ricotta, sun-dried tomato and Feta, rice and mussels, mashed Feta and minced hot banana pepper were my choices on this occasion)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup corn starch
1/2 cup Ouzo
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 – 3/4 cup of cold sparkling water/club soda
all-purpose flour for dredging
sea salt and ground pepper
olive oil or sunflower oil (or combo of both) for frying
lemon wedges for garnish
- Remove the outer leaves around the base of the zucchini blossoms, remove the pistil and soak in warm water for 10 minutes. Drain, dry upside down and pat-dry. Prepare your fillings of choice, carefully insert with teaspoon worth in each blossom and fold the petals inward to seal.
- Add your flour, corn starch and baking powder into a bowl and stir with a fork to mix well. Now slowly add your Ouzo into the bowl while whisking, a paste should form.
- Now slowly add your sparkling water/club soda while whisking until your batter reaches the consistency of a loose pancake batter (thicker than crepe batter but thinner than pancake batter). If too thick, add some more soda, if too thin, add some flour to rectify. Set the batter aside.
- Pre-heat your oil for frying to a temperature of approx. 350-360F.
- I like to dredge whatever I’m frying in lightly seasoned flour. Add some sea salt and ground pepper to some all-purpose flour and stir with a fork. Lightly dredge whatever you are going to fry in the flour before dipping in the batter (shake off excess flour).
- Once your oil has reached the correct temperature, take your zucchini blossoms (already dredged in flour) by the stem and dip in the batter and carefully place in the hot oil. Fry in batches of four and then remove and place on a platter lined with kitchen towel. Season with sea salt. Fry off the remaining batches, serve with wedges of lemon.
If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://kalofagas.ca then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at truenorth67 AT gmail DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author.
© 2007-2010 Peter Minakis
. All rights reserved.