Fried Zucchini Blossoms With Goat Cheese and Zucchini Pesto


24 zucchini blossoms
1/2 cup goat cheese
1 1/2 quarts olive oil
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups chilled seltzer water or ice water
Sea salt to taste
Cayenne pepper to taste
1 medium zucchini - (abt 8 oz)
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons pine nuts
30 cups x basil leaves - (abt ¾ loosely packed)
1/4 teaspoon finely-chopped garlic
6 ounces extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt to taste
Freshly cracked black pepper to taste


For the Blossoms: Carefully stuff each zucchini blossom with 1 teaspoon of the goat cheese. Fold over the petals to form an envelope. In a deep skillet or deep fryer, heat the oil to 375 degrees. Meanwhile put the flour in a mixing bowl. Pour in the seltzer a little at a time, whisking constantly to ensure a smooth batter. Season with salt and cayenne.
When the oil is properly heated, dip a stuffed blossom into the batter to coat it evenly, scraping off any excess. Fry until crisp and golden, about 30 seconds per side. Remove to paper towels to drain. Repeat process with all blossoms, being careful not to overcrowd the skillet and maintaining the proper oil temperature.
For the Pesto: Quarter zucchini and cut into 1-inch pieces. Blanch zucchini for 2 minutes in salted boiling water, and then shock in ice bath to preserve color. Drain well and pat dry with cloth. Place blanched zucchini, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, basil leaves, garlic, in food processor and start to puree. With the motor running, pour the olive oil through the feed tube in a slow, steady stream until the pesto emulsifies. Season with salt and pepper



Tuesday, April 13, 2010 - 6:25am


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