These crunchy fried pumpkin flowers make a great summer starter.
It’s been a week since we arrived in Italy for our summer holidays.
Thanks to the weekly work of my sister and her husband my dad has a great vegetable garden.
In Italy you have to pick up your vegetables during the first part of the morning or you risk to melt in the sun! So, yesterday I woke up early and went in the garden, my nightgown still on, to pick up pumpkins flowers.
The blossoms are fully opened only until 10 am (roughly) and they are visited by a big quantity of bees when they are open.
The insects were getting drunk with the flowers nectar.
I was almost sorry to disturb their breakfast. Some of the bees were covered in yellow powder and were finding difficult to fly, loaded as they were of pollen!
I picked the pumpkin flowers that didn’t have any little pumpkins at their bottom and I picked them with a long stem.
I put them heads down for a moment to show the bees that breakfast was over and then I placed them in a vase with some water to keep them fresh and open until it was cooking time.
Pumpkin flowers in batter is a recipe that you can afford, if you live in Ireland, only if you have a vegetable garden or if you happen to know somebody that have one.
In Italy, though, you can usually find bags or bunches of pumpkin flowers to sell in farmers markets and supermarkets.
When I was a kid it was a real treat for me – I adored them.
My mum used to make the batter with egg and sugar as well, I treasure that memory but as a savory food lover I really like my simple savory (and vegan) variation! So, you will find no sugar and no eggs in my recipe:
Ingredients for Crunchy Fried Pumpkin Flowers
- 24 Pumpkin flowers
- 50 g flour
- A couple of splashes of cold sparkling water or beer
- Extra Virgin Olive oil
How to Make Crunchy Fried Pumpkin Flowers
Wash the flowers under the water, cut one side of the flowers to open them.
Set them apart.
Prepare the batter adding splashes of sparkling water to the flour and mixing vigorously with a fork.
The batter must be fluid but not liquid.
Heat some oil in a frying pan, enough to cover totally the bottom.
Coat each flower in the batter:
When the oil is hot place all the battered flowers gently in the pan.
Try not to leave much spaces between a flower and the other.
Let them fry for few minutes and turn them on the other side.
You may need the side of a wooden spoon to separate the flowers who stuck together.
Sprinkle them with salt.
Remove them from the pan.
Enjoy them hot and crunchy!