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From Market to Mouth

Every summer when I see zucchini blossoms at the farmer’s market,  I have an uncontrollable desire to make this dish.  The flowers are so beautiful that I just can’t resist them.

The finished plate is quite striking and it works perfectly for a dinner party or special occasion at home. 

The biggest decision you have to make really is which cheeses to use.  Buy the best quality cheese that you can afford.   If there is one particular cheese you love,  make that the star of the show,  but remember it is all about balance.

Each cheese brings something special to the plate:different textures, different levels of salt, one might melt better than anotherwhile a different one will help bind everything together.
Sadly, summer is coming to a close so get these while you still can.
Tempura-Battered Zucchini Blossoms stuffed with 4 cheeses
For this you’ll need:
  • 6-8 zucchini blossoms
  • 1 cup grated manchego cheese
  • 1/4 cup blue cheese
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup goat cheese
  • 2 cups rice or all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 egg
  • canola oil

 First, make the cheese filling:  Combine all four cheeses in the food processor until smooth and completely combined.  Taste for seasoning,  add salt & pepper.  Fill a piping bag, or a quart-sized storage bag with the filling and set aside.

Next, open the flowers very carefully and pull out the pistil:


Cut the tip off of the piping bag, or the corner of the storage bag and carefully fill the flowers:


Once all the flowers have been filled,  gently pinch them shut to seal the cheese inside.

Put the flowers in the refrigerator for about an hour to set up.  If the cheese is not cold when you fry them,  it will melt immediately and run out into the oil.

Next, make the batter by combining the egg with the water, then whisk in the flour. It should be a little thinner than pancake batter. Set aside.

Heat approximately 6 cups of oil in a medium sized pot over med-high heat. If you have a thermometer, the oil should be at 350 degrees. Make sure you have at least a few inches to the top of the pot for safety. Boiling oil can be very dangerous, better to be safe and leave yourself a little extra room.

Dip the flowers into the tempura batter and gently “sweep” it across the surface of the oil before you let it drop:

Fry a few minutes until golden brown, then using a metal strainer or “spider”, remove from the oil and set on paper towels to drain.
Plate while warm and enjoy this delicate treat before warm, sun-filled days come to an end…  I hope you all had a wonderful summer and had plenty of good food with friends and family.
Dinner Party with Friends:
“family style”
Dinner at Home:
individual plates
Happy Eating!

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