Thursday, August 30, 2012

Carmela Soprano's Fiori di Zucca Fritti (Fried Zucchini (Squash) Flowers)

If you garden in Canada, September is a cruel month.
Plants, like tomatoes and zucchini, are still making flowers.
But you know darn well that there isn't enough time for them to ripen.

Another month, the garden will be compost fodder.

Still, there are those honking big yellow flowers on the zucchini plants.
It's a shame to just waste them.
So, don't...

In the Mia Cucina chapter of The Sopranos Family Cookbook there's a recipe for 
Fiori di Zucca Fritti, Fried Zucchini Flowers.
It's something like onion rings.
Well, not as tasty.
But it's a way to save a bad situation.

If you don't have a deep fry thermometer, drop a bit of the batter into the oil.
If it sizzles and quickly rises to the surface, start frying.
And don't crowd the frying flowers.

This recipe is for 16 zucchini or squash flowers.
If you have more or less, adjust.

Serve these with pride.
They are considered a treat... by non-gardeners.

                        Fiori di Zucca Fritti

In a small bow combine
1/3 Cup flour
1/3 Cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Stir in
1/2 Cup sparkling mineral water
Let stand one hour.

In a deep heavy saucepan pour
2 inches of oil
Over medium heat, heat oil to 375ยบ

Dip a zucchini or squash flowers in the batter, coating it completely.
Gently place it in the hot oil.
Repeat with a few more flowers.
Fry, turning once, 2 minutes or until crisp.
Remove the flowers with a slotted spoon.
Drain on paper towels.
Repeat with remaining flowers and serve immediately.

Would I make Fiori di Zucca Fritti again? 
And a teaspoon of onion powder doesn't hurt.
Along with a few prayers for better gardening weather next summer. 

One recipe down.  Eighty-three more to go.  

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