Warning: This is a wordy post!
I went to the Farmer’s market for the FIRST time all summer last weekend. Can you believe that? Summer’s almost over and I just now made it to the Farmer’s market. That’s just…so, so sad. All summer I’ve been spending oodles of money on non-organic produce at the grocery store, because I “didn’t have the time” to get up early, sit my butt in the car, and drive for maybe eight minutes to the closest farmer’s market. Now, if that isn’t laziness at its finest, I don’t know what is.
When I finally decided enough was enough and I NEEDED to scoot on down there, I wondered why I’d waited so long – I had completely forgotten just how magical a great farmer’s market is. Of course, there were hoards of colorful, funky looking heirloom tomatoes, juicy peaches, (I think I’ve cooked with peaches enough for now, evidenced here, here and here) oddly shaped eggplants and chili peppers of all kinds, but the one thing I kept going back to were the bushels of bright yellow squash blossoms.
I’ve had squash blossoms in restaurants, but had yet to try my hand making them at home – I think it was something about the dainty structure of the blossom coupled with the daunting task of deep-frying that scared me off. Would I break them while stuffing? Would I have a light enough batter? Would they taste good?
Insecurities aside, I decided to go for it – I mean they were only a whole dollar a bunch, what’s the worse that could happen?
Next predicament, what shall I stuff them with?
Again, I was inspired by the market – amongst all the fruits and veggies, in a tiny little booth were samples of different varieties of local goat cheese. Honey rosemary, harissa, dill, cajun and the most delicious sun-dried tomato and basil – perfect for the soft filling of a squash blossom. Since I already had goat cheese and sundried tomatoes at home, I opted to make my own – but you can bet your bottom dollar that I’ll be going back this week to snatch up one of those babies. I’m thinking rosemary and honey this time….
Now, for putting the idea into reality…Goat cheese and sun-dried tomatoes take a whirl in the food processor, becoming one homogenous mixture that is transported into a baggie and then stuffed into the delicate squash blossoms. Now, these guys are super fragile, stuffing is a meticulous process, easy, but meticulous. The flower must be opened ever-so-carefully and the filling, gently nudged in. Once each guy is stuffed you’re pretty much home free.
They’re dunked in a super light batter of club soda and flour, then fried in a shallow pool of canola until crisp and slightly golden. The cheese may ooze out a bit, that’s ok.
Serve them by their lonesome, serve them with marinara sauce, or serve them with a nice lemon aioli, the choice is yours.
- 1 bunch squash blossoms (about 10)
- 3 ounces goat cheese, softened
- 2 sun-dried tomatoes
- A pinch of salt and pepper
- ½ cup flour
- 1 cup club soda
- ⅛ teaspoon baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- Canola Oil for frying
- Pull the stamen out of each blossom, keeping careful to not tear the flower.
- In a food processor (small or large), pulse until sun-dried tomato and goat cheese is combined. Place mixture in a ziplock bag and cut tip off. Gently pipe filing into each blossom, don't overfill. Twist tops to enclose.
- Refrigerate while oil heats. Fill a small saucepan with about one inch of canola oil. Heat to medium-high or 375 degrees.
- In a medium bowl, whisk flour, club soda, baking powder and pinch of salt.
- Dip each blossom in the batter, drain off excess. Working one blossom at a time, cook in hot oil, until crisp and golden, about 30 seconds to one minute.
- Season with salt immediately.
- Serve with marinara sauce.