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While fried blossoms are enjoyed in a lot of cuisines in many different ways, the batter and the spices used in here makes this so typically Indian. What is even more special is that the blossoms are from our backyard
Back in India, these fritters are usually made with pumpkin blossoms. Zucchini blossoms are easier to find here and they pretty much taste the same.
Yes our long awaited summer break has finally begun. And that means the girls are home with me and while I will be cooking a lot (and sometimes with them), I will get almost no time to photograph or make a post for the blog. I will try to post once in a while, but there are no promises. I have some posts in the draft and I will try to finish them and post whenever I can make some time.
I hope all of you have a wonderful summer with children and your family. This is the time to relax, not wake up to the screech of the alarm clock and rejuvenate for another busy year. Enjoy and soak in this beautiful time.
The batter for these fritters are made with chickpea flour – all gluten free. Besan/chickpea flour is the most common flour used to make fritters in India. To this I have added some poppy seeds which imparts a lovely crunch and some nigella seeds for flavor.
The zucchini plants have pretty much taken over my vegetable patch. We are having a lot of zucchinis and there is no scarcity of the flowers either. The bees and the insects are constantly humming and crawling around it.
They bloom early on and as the day moves ahead, the blossoms silently and softly close, sometimes closing their petals with the insects inside them – the reason to wash them well before you start to cook, and let the bugs out back in the yard again of course.
On this front things had gone a bit crazy. Have you encountered one of those times when just everything seems to be happening at the same time? I am sure you have. It has been that way for a while now… more than words can say. We are slowly settling down. Summer is here and we are determined to have a good time.
(I have used the Bengal Gram/Brown Chickpea flour for the above fritters. Do you notice the darker shade of brown? Brown Chickpea flour is darker than the Chickpea flour and has more texture to it).
The crispy on the outside and tender on the inside fried blossoms were one of the “most wanted” recipes, and it is only now after so many years that I enjoying them with all my heart.
In other cuisines the blossoms are usually stuffed with cheese or meat or various other things. But these ones are fried just by themselves. If you have enough blossoms, it is a good idea to stuff a blossoms with a couple of others, just to give it some volume and bite. But if there are not enough, they are good just by themselves too.
Chickpea and Poppy Seed Batter Fried Squash Blossom
Ingredients: (makes 10 fritters)
- 20 squash blossoms (blossoms with a little bit of stems attached are preferred as they are easy to dip in the batter)
- 3/4 – 1 cup chickpea flour/besan
- 1.5 tablespoon rice flour (optional but recommended if you want it nice and crisp)
- 1/4 teaspoon kalonji/nigella seeds
- salt to taste
- 1.5 tablespoon poppy seeds - I have used while poppy seeds as this is the kind used in Indian recipes (the black one is fine too)
- 1/4 teaspoon turmeric (optional)
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder/cayenne
- a pinch of baking soda
- water – just enough to make a thick batter
- oil to deep fry
- Chaat Masala or Kala Namak/Black Salt to sprinkle if you wish
Wash the blossoms well, even the inside. Remove dirt and insects. Often times the bugs cling on to the inside walls. Carefully open the petals and wash the inside.
Remove the yellow pistil/stamen from inside the flower and wash the flowers well.
Make a thick batter (thick enough to coat the blossoms well ) with the water, poppy seeds, chickpea flour, rice flour, salt, turmeric, chili powder, baking soda, kalonji/nigella seeds.
Stuff one blossom inside the other. (you can do up to 3 flowers if you have enough; single blossom may be batter fried too, it only will not have that much bite to it).
Heat enough oil in a wok/kadhai to deep fry. Dip the blossom in the batter, give it a small shake for the extra to drizzle off and carefully place in the hot oil a few at a time. Do not overcrowd and fry in batches if needed. Fry until both sides are golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
Sprinkle some chaat masala or kala namak/black salt if you wish (it tastes fantastic without it too).
Serve right away – piping hot with your favorite condiment.
Traditionally we have it as a side with any kind of dal and rice during meal times. But these are as perfect as snacks too, especially on a rainy day.
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Difficulty Level: Easy
Serves/Makes: makes 10 fried blossoms