© Paula Trites
Zucchini Blossoms (aka Courgette Blossoms) are the edible flowers of zucchini plants. They will have a crisp texture and a very faint zucchini taste to them.
There are both male and female blossoms. If you are harvesting the flowers from your own garden, leave the female flowers on the plants, these produce the actual zucchini. These blossoms will have a swelling just behind them where the zucchini will develop. Harvest instead the male flowers, which will have long, straight stems.
A variety of zucchini called “Butterblossom Zucchini” is considered a variety good at producing lots of male blossoms.
The blossoms are best picked quite early in the day, when they will still be open. This makes them easier to clean.
To prepare, trim the hard stems of the blossoms down to a few cm (1 inch). Remove the pistils and discard them; do this carefully so as not to rip the blossoms. Rinse the blossoms under cold water (dirt may be hiding in the folds) and pat dry.
You can chop the flowers and use them raw in salads, or sliver them for use as garnishes, etc.
There are many elaborate recipes for zucchini blossoms including stuffing them and covering them in sauces, but as they are so delicate in texture and taste, many consider the best way of cooking them is to dust them with a little flour and salt, fry quickly in some oil just until wilted, or golden-brown if deep frying, then serving them as is straight from the pan.
They will shrink a good deal when cooked. Allow 6 to 8 blossoms as a side per person.