A Zucchini flower with any other name would taste as delicious…
The first time I had Zucchini flowers was at a Chianti, a fine dining Italian restaurant in Adelaide. It was love at first bite! Since then I have been in the pursuit of finding zucchini flowers at other Italian restaurant, they never quite matched the finesse and flavours of the ones from Chianti.
Just when I had given up, I saw that my local grocer had started stocking fresh zucchini flowers. As you know necessity is the mother of all invention and when I saw them at the shops it was absolutely necessary for me to eat them. As always I relied on my husband to be my guinea pig.
The best way to make zucchini flowers is to stuff them.You can stuff them with grains such as rice or quinoa or better yet with cheese such as ricotta or goats cheese. My recipe is with goats cheese because my husband and I love the gooey and salty flavour of goats cheese oozing from the crispy zucchini flowers.Ingredients: 6 Cooking time: 20 minutes Serves: 2 For the zucchini flowers:
- A pack of fresh zucchini flowers (usually there are six in a pack)
- One cup of crumbled goats cheese
- 3/4 cup of plain flower
- One cup of water
- Salt to season
- Vegetable oil to fry
- A bunch of fresh coriander
- 1/2 a cucumber
- Three tablespoons of olive oil
- One pod of garlic
- One teaspoon dried mint leaves
- One green chilli
- One teaspoon of sugar
- Salt to taste
Lets make the dipping sauce first – Blend all the ingredients in a blender and there your dipping sauce is ready! You can transfer it into an old squeezable sauce bottle and if kept in the refrigerator it will last upto a week.
Moving on to the beautiful zucchini flowers, wash the flowers and towel dry them. Part the petals and gently remove the bulbs, they are connected to the stem so make sure you are really gentle or you could snap the flower off the stem. Now its time to stuff the flowers – gently part the petals again and make a little mound of the crumbled goats cheese and place it as close to the centre as you can. Make sure the petals cover the cheese stuffing and to close the flower simply twist the petals together, again very gently.
To make the flowers really crispy, I recommend before you fry them to dip them in tempura batter. To make the batter mix the flour and water and add a pinch of salt and whisk it well, ensuring there are no lumps.
In a pan heat some vegetable oil, dip the zucchini flowers in the tempura batter and shallow fry them on both sides.
Once fried, place the zucchini flowers on paper towels to dry of the excess oil. Tada they are ready to serve!