Squash blossoms are also sometimes called zucchini flowers, but they can come from any summer or even winter squashes. They are the edible flowers of the squash plant and usually come in yellow and orange shades. Squash blossoms are soft, delicate, and taste mildly like the squash itself. They are available late spring to early fall.
Health Benefits of Squash Blossoms: Being as light and delicate as they are, squash blossoms aren’t a highly nutritional food. One cup of squash blossoms only has five calories! It also has one gram of carbohydrates and less than one gram of protein, just to give you the picture. That said, squash blossoms are high in calcium and iron and especially high in vitamins C and A. So, they aren’t just lookers.
Light Baked Stuffed Squash Blossoms
- 16 squash blossoms with 1-3stems if possible--the male flower of a zucchini or pumpkin plant, go for just normal sizes if you have a choice
- 1 cup ricotta
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp salt
- pinch black pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- 1 garlic clove minced--use as much as you like, cloves varysize so choose one that suits your taste preference
- 1 egg
- 1 pinch salt
- 3/4-1 cup panko bread crumbs
- heat the oven to 400˚
- grease a baking sheet big enough to hold the blossoms with out crowding them
- look over your squash blossoms and make sure they are free of dirt and bugs, use a clean paint brush to flick any dirt way-if they have bugs in them a quick soak in lightly salted water will drive the bugs out BUT this will also make the blossoms a little more tender and prone to tearing, you can also remove the insides of the flower, the stamen, if you want to but it's not necessary because it cooks through and it's soft when cooked
- put the ricotta, egg, salt, pepper, basil and garlic in a small bowl and mix well
- fill the cleaned squash blossoms with the ricotta mixture by using a spoon or a piping bag, dividing the filling evenly between the blossoms
- once they're all filled give each one a twist by holding the stem and the top of the blossom and turning it, this will seal the blossom so it can be dipped and rolled without having the filling flop out
- to "bread" them beat the egg with the salt in a small bowl, place about half the panko in another bowl, both should be big enough to hold a blossom
- dip each blossom carefully in the egg, let the excess drip back in for a moment and the roll lightly in the panko and then back to the baking sheet it goes
- repeat with the rest of the blossoms adding more panko to the bowl as needed
- bake in the preheated oven on a middle rack for roughly 15 minutes, watch them towards the end because you don't want them to brown too much or singe a little and bread crumbs are notorious (in my house) for burning
SQUASH BLOSSOM TART
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup/235ml half and half (light cream)
- 2 zucchini or summer squash, shredded
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon basil, chopped
- 2 teaspoons mint, chopped
- 4 oz/115g goat cheese or cheddar cheese, crumbles or shredded
- 7 or 8 squash blossoms, more if they are small.
- pastry for 11" tart pan
- Preheat the oven to 425F/200C
- Wash and dry the squash blossoms.
- Sometimes critters like to hide inside so wash thoroughly!
- Dry gently on a towel, patting them dry carefully.
- Prepare the pastry for the tart pan.
- Roll out and line the pan.
- In a bowl, beat the eggs and add the half and half or light cream.
- Add the garlic powder, paprika and salt, mix well.
- Add the shredded zucchini and mix.
- Add the herbs and mix.
- Hold back a couple of teaspoons of the cheese to sprinkle on top and add the rest to the egg-zucchini mixture.
- Mix well and pour into the tart pan.
- Nestle the squash blossoms into the tart pan.
- Sprinkle the reserved cheese over the blossoms, don't obscure the pretty petals too much.
- Place the tart pan on a sheet tray and place on the bottom rack of the oven.
- Bake for about 40 minutes until firm and golden brown.
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 lb. store-bought pizza dough
- 1/2 c. fresh ricotta
- 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. Freshly ground pepper
- 8 squash blossoms
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Meanwhile, grease a 9- by 13-inch baking pan with 2 tablespoons oil. Place dough in pan; press it with fingers to dimple, and then stretch it to the corners of the pan. If dough springs back, let it rest 10 minutes and stretch again. Bake for 8 minutes.
- Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Spread ricotta atop bread; then sprinkle on half of Parmesan, plus salt and pepper. Arrange squash blossoms atop cheeses, as shown. Sprinkle on remaining Parmesan. Bake until bread is golden, 10 minutes. Remove from oven and drizzle with remaining oil before serving.