Thursday, June 30, 2011

Inspired by Rome: Stuffed Squash Blossoms

Good morning!

Today I'm going to share a recipe inspired by my time in Rome (as I shared yesterday) - specifically, a specialty of the Jewish Ghetto region, stuffed squash blossoms.

Now, the ones I tried in Rome were delicious, but they were packed with mozzarella and (of all things) sardines, then battered and deep-fried.  These days I mostly avoid things that can be described as "battered and deep-fried."  But I had an idea for lightening up the recipe, so I tried it.  It was great!

Just four ingredients!  Not counting a spritz of cooking oil.

And one other supply - wooden toothpicks, which I soak in water for a few minutes.

First, grate 1 tb of lemon peel, and chop up 2 tb of basil.

Combine with 2 ounces of goat cheese - stir until it's creamy.  Transfer the mixture into
a plastic zipper bag, and snip off one of the corners to create a makeshift pastry bag.

Prep all of the flowers, discarding the stem from the outside, and the stamen from the inside.
The flowers can be delicate, so do this as carefully as you can.

Spread flower petals delicately, until you can see all the way into the bulb.
No, that's not a euphemism for anything.  Minds out of the gutter!

Fill the bulb with the mixture - but stop before it reaches the petals.

Fold the petals over (left to middle, right to middle) and pierce it with a toothpick.

Place a frying pan over medium heat, and spray a spritz of cooking spray (like Pam.)
Lay down the flower bulbs - but don't crowd the pan - and spritz the tops with Pam.
After about 2 minutes, flip each flower to cook the other side.

It'll hardly be long before the flowers are soft and the cheese is oozy.
Sprinkle with a touch of sea salt, and enjoy!

For as decadent as this treat seems, it's actually not too caloric - and WAY less than the version I tried in Rome.

Squash blossoms are available at a lot of farmer's markets at this time of year, and possibly at specialty markets, too - I got mine at Super King.  (Or in the garden, if you're lucky enough to have one!)   If you haven't tried them before, I highly recommend giving them a shot.  I know, I know - it's unusual to eat flowers, but when stuffed and cooked, I think you'll find them to be scrumptious!

Have a beautiful day... maybe this is your last day before the holiday?  Yesterday was our friend Rena's, and we are awaiting her arrival on our doorstep this morning, as she'll be visiting for the holiday.  Lots of adventures to come!  I'll be back tomorrow with some fashion news, and until then, take care of you!


  1. I'm a fairly picky eater and would never think of eating a flower. However, you made these appear not-so-scary. I might actually have to try them! (With mozzarella or something though, as my picky buds don't like goat cheese.) Thanks for posting and encouraging me to be more adventurous! :)

  2. These look so good! I would have to buy the blossoms because I don't think I could muster taking them off my own plants- I love the squash too much! But anything with goat cheese is worth a try!

  3. Thank you for this! My farmer's market "odd" veggie guy gives the blossoms away when you buy something. I get dandelion leaves and camomile flowers as a change of pace for the bunnies but didn't know what to do with the flowers. Now I will totally give this a try.

  4. Those look really good, and I just happen to have some squash blossoms growing in my backyard. Thanks for sharing/demonstrating the recipe!