A beautiful bunch of brightly colored flowers?
Okay, much more than a bunch. More like a 1-pound bag of these delicate beauties.
Cook them, of course!
These gorgeous flowers are called Flor de Calabaza (Squash Blossoms). They are part of the zucchini plant. And they are totally edible! (Not to mention absolutely delicious!)
Flor de Calabaza can be used in a number of dishes, including soup, quesadillas and even stir-fry. But my favorite way to eat Flor de Calabaza is breaded and stuffed with cheese. Lightly crisp and golden on the outside, filled with yummy melted cheese on the inside. (Sigh!)
Breaded & Stuffed Flor de Calabaza
- 1 pound fresh squash blossoms
- 2 cups dry bread crumbs (plain or flavored)
- 3 eggs
- 6 to 8 oz. Manchego, Chihuahua or Asadero cheese
Clean the squash blossoms with a moist paper towel to remove any dirt. If you rinse the squash blossoms in water, you could end up with droopy flowers that just don't look all that pretty. Remove the stamen from the inside of the squash blossom.
Place the bread crumbs in a wide bowl. Season with seasoning salt and pepper; set aside.
Slice the cheese into 3-inch sticks. (About a 1/2-inch wide.)
Place a cheese stick inside of each squash blossom. Fold the ends over the cheese and secure with a toothpick. An important point to remember when working with flor de calabaza is that the cheese is heavier than the flower. So do not lift the flowers from the stem to transfer them to the egg, bread crumbs and skillet.
Dip the squash blossoms in the beaten eggs. (If you didn't secure the ends of the squash blossom in the previous step, you can twist the now moistened ends together to ensure that the cheese stays in it's place.)
Roll the squash blossoms in bread crumbs until completely coated.
|Always the rebel...No toothpicks! :P|
Heat 1/2 cup of vegetable oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Carefully lay the stuffed squash blossoms in the skillet. Fry the flor de calabaza until golden brown on both sides. Transfer to a heat-proof plate lined with paper towels to drain excess oil. Remove the toothpicks before serving.
Serve with your favorite salsa.
*Important note: Squash blossoms are very delicate and don't store well in the refrigerator. It's best to use your Flor de Calabaza within a day or 2 of purchase.