Stuffed Zucchini Blossoms with Heirloom Tomato Salad
- 1/2 pound fresh mozzarella, patted dry and cubed
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
- 1/4 cup chiffonade basil leaves
- 8 zucchini flowers
- 3 to 4 heirloom tomatoes, cut into wedges (use different sizes and colors)
- 3 to 4 scallions, sliced super thin on the bias
- Kosher salt
- Red wine vinegar
- High quality extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 to 3/4 cup white wine
- Peanut oil or vegetable oil, for frying
In a medium bowl, toss together the mozzarella, Parmesan and 2 tablespoons of the basil chiffonade. Gently stick your finger inside the flower all the way to the base where the flower meets the stem and carefully break off the stamen. When doing this be careful not to rip through the flower. Squeeze 2 tablespoons of the mozzarella mixture into an oblong shape and gently stuff it into each flower. Squeeze the flower around the cheese to close. Reserve.
Toss the tomatoes together with the scallions and remaining basil in a large bowl. Sprinkle with salt and add a drizzle of red wine vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil. Taste to make sure it is delicious and adjust seasoning, if needed.
In a small bowl, combine the flour and 1/2 cup of white wine. Mix until it becomes a loose batter adding more white wine, if necessary.
Add peanut oil to a saucepan until it reaches a depth of 1-inch. Heat the oil over medium-high heat. Test the oil by dropping a couple of beads of the batter into it. When they float instantly the oil is ready. If the oil begins to smoke, it is too hot. Set up a paper towel drying situation before frying the flowers.
Dip the flowers, 1 at time, into the batter and carefully drop them into the oil. Fry on both sides until they are golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the flowers from the oil, drain on paper towels and sprinkle with salt. Continue with the remaining flowers.
Arrange the tomato salad on 4 salad plates and top each plate with 2 flowers.
What a delicious flower!
Recipe courtesy Anne Burrell