I know at this point you’re probably getting a little tired of me talking about Salavatore. But we got to hang out a lot last month, and naturally this translated into good food.
One thing Salvatore is incapable of doing is arriving somewhere without the gift of food. I’ve already told you what happened when I invited him to lunch. And in the past he’s shown up with crate loads of tomatoes, baskets of beans or dishes of panzanella. He even brought Domenico three huge sacks of manure recently (which, while not food, is all about the food ) And it’s always in huge quantities. That’s his thing, cooking for a crowd.
So when Salvatore showed up at the berry farm to meet me last week, I shouldn’t have been surprised that his little truck was filled with food. For me.
The most splendid item was a massive bunch of flowers. Zucchini flowers that is. A big bowl of just picked blossoms from his garden.
Since there were so many of them, I decided not to go through the fussiness of stuffing them before frying them (there was never any question about the frying part of the equation). I just dipped them in a simple batter and fried them up.
While Emma and Jane set the table, I fried up the beauties. What had seemed like an impossibly large amount of flowers when Salvatore handed them over to me, disappeared in a shockingly short amount of time. They didn’t even make it to the table.
I guess I should rethink the whole quantity thing alla Salavatore.
- Zucchini or squash blossoms
- All purpose flour
- Sparkling water
- Oil for frying ( I use olive oil)
- Gently remove the stamen from each flower and shake off any dirt.
- Fill a shallow bowl with water. Slowly add flour, stirring with a fork. Keep adding flower until the batter is the consistency of crepe batter. In other words, very runny pancake batter. Add a pinch of salt, stir and let rest for 15 minutes.
- When ready to cook, heat about 2 inches of olive oil in a frying pan.
- Dip each flower in the batter, and let excess drip off. Place gently into pan with oil, and fry. Don’t over crowd. After a few minutes, turn and cook on the other side. They should be golden and take a total of 4 to 5 minutes tops.
- Place on paper towels to drain, sprinkle with salt and serve.