Smells of fresh baked bread and earthy tomatoes float through the crowd while my hand is being held tightly with the remnants of a sticky chocolate croissant. That’s how most of my Saturday mornings begin, finding my way through the produce-filled stalls of the farmer’s market with my curly-headed daughter in tow. From the small community markets to the large Dallas Farmer’s Market, a visit to pick up the freshest local produce and meats that the season has to offer is a weekend ritual for us. Besides fresh goods, my true reason to go to the farmer’s market is to find the produce and cuts of meat that I can’t find in the stores and in summer that means squash blossoms. Sweet and sticky zucchini blossoms to stuff with flavored cheese and steam or quickly fry is the ultimate summer comfort food — that’s where these Curried Ricotta Squash Blossoms come in to play.
Most people can grow zucchini and yellow squash in Texas but I am not most people. I’ve tried my hand at this seasonal fare for years and I either come out with wilted mildew leaves or no plant at all. There’s a saying here that if you need summer squash in Texas, just roll down your car window and wait a few seconds as someone is sure to throw a bag full in your seat. Sadly, I’ve never even had enough to eat let alone to give away. In my case, just after the blossoms set and start to grow, powdery mildew takes it’s hold and kills off my squash plants — leaving me with a basket full of flowers. Needles to say, I have gotten pretty good at using up this summer delicacy over the years.
Squash blossoms are tender and sticky with a fresh hint of a basil-like flavor and lately, I’ve found they pair fabulously with curry. Inspired by curried potato dumplings with sweet vinegar sauce from our neighborhood Thai restaurant, I created these Curried Ricotta Squash Blossoms using gorgeous blossoms that I grabbed at the farmer’s market. The outcome was nothing short of spectacular and I was deliriously happy with all of the amazing flavors coming together. Take a moment and think about it, aromatic curry blended with smooth fresh ricotta, wrapped in a delicate squash blossom, and lightly fried in an airy and supper crisp batter then served with a sweet chili sauce — it’s enough to make a grown man cry.
Like a pocket full of gold, these Curried Ricotta Squash Blossoms are light and crispy with a creamy flavorful center that are deliciously elegant but simple to make. Serve with a sweet chili sauce like Tabasco Sweet and Spicy Sauce or make your own with this recipe from SeriousEats.com to open up a world of flavor.
wine and beer pairings
wine: Chenin Blanc (an amazing pairing), Alsace wines (especially Riesling or Pinot blanc), Prosecco or off-dry Champagne
beer: Pilsner or Saison
As long as your child likes the flavor of curry, this is a win. The Tabasco Sweet and Spicy Pepper Sauce is more sweet with little to no heat but a sweetened vinegar sauce is certainly an alternative. We had to hold my 6-year-old back from eating them all.
Like a pocket full of gold, these Curried Ricotta Squash Blossoms are light and crispy with a creamy flavorful center that are deliciously elegant but simple to make.
- 1 cup whole-milk ricotta
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 tablespoons Thai yellow curry paste
- 12 to 16 large zucchini squash blossoms
- 3/4 cup chilled club soda
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- About 3 cups peanut oil for frying
- Flaked sea salt
- In a bowl, stir to combine ricotta, egg yolk, and curry paste. Transfer the curried ricotta to a piping bag or a food-safe plastic bag and cut the end or corner off with scissors. Carefully open a blossom and pipe the curried ricotta into the blossom leaving about 2 inches free from the top (about 2 tablespoons worth). Gently twist the blossom closed. Repeat with the remaining blossoms.
- In a heavy bottom pot or a 10-inch heavy skillet, heat oil over high heat to 375°F.
- In a bowl, whisk to combine club soda and flour. One at a time, dip half of the blossoms in the batter and carefully place in the oil. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes, flipping gently with a chopstick or fork halfway through, until lightly golden. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and season with a pinch of salt. Repeat with the remaining blossoms.
- Serve immediately with a sweet chili sauce like Tabasco Sweet and Spicy Pepper Sauce or make your own with this simple recipe from SeriousEats.com and garnish with cucumber slices and cilantro.
- Ricotta filling can be made one day in advance and refrigerated.