August 20, 2017

I Made Something Yummy Today - Fried Stuffed Zucchini Flowers


When I see Zucchini Flowers on a menu, I'm often intrigued to try them. While this delicate, soft blossom has been used and enjoyed for many years (Italians have been preparing Pitelle/Pitticelle, as they're known, for ages), I only tried zucchini flowers for the first time a few years ago.

They are somewhat of a delicacy; zucchini flowers are very fragile and tender, and only available for a short harvest. They're special.

Of course, when I saw them today at our local farmer's market, I wanted to try making them. 

There are many recipes for making fried zucchini flowers, or traditional pitelle. My grandmother makes a pancake-like fritter, chopped with herbs and dipped in egg and flour. Others stuff them. Some coat them in egg whites and sparkling water. 

I read a few recipes and naturally, made my own.

Lemon Ricotta Zucchini Flowers

You will need: 

24 fresh zucchini flowers
1 1/4 cup flour
1 bottle beer - I used a Blonde Lager
1 cup ricotta
1 lemon
Grapeseed Oil/Vegetable Oil
Freshly cracked black pepper
1 tsp Pink Himalayan Salt

Instructions:

Gently wash zucchini flowers, peel petals back carefully and remove the stamen or pistol. Cut stem and set flowers aside to dry. To make stuffing, combine ricotta and the juice of 1/2 lemon, along with the zest of the entire lemon. Sprinkle with black pepper. Mix well and add about 1 tsp of the mix to each zucchini flower. (Ensure the flowers are completely dry before stuffing) 

If you don't want to stuff, move directly to batter. (The unstuffed flowers are equally yummy, and just a bit lighter)

lemon ricotta zucchini flowers

To make the batter, whisk the flour, salt and one bottle of beer. I used a blonde lager. Whisk until all the lumps are removed and the batter is smooth, yet still bubbly. 

Coat the bottom of a pan with 2-3 inches of oil. I use a grapeseed oil as it has a very light flavour and a high burning point. Ensure the oil is very hot.

Gently dip each stuffed flower into the batter, allowing it to drip, before carefully placing into the hot oil. Cook 3-4 flowers at once, being mindful not to overcrowd the pan. Cook on each side for 1-2 minutes. 

Remove and rest on paper towel to absorb any additional oil. 

The outside will be hot and crispy, yet light, and the flower will serve as a silky cushion for the tangy, creamy ricotta filling.

Enjoy immediately. And don't forget to share.

fried pitelle

Do you make fried zucchini flowers? Share your recipe!

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