Stuffed Squash Blossoms with Tomato Fondue and Basil Oil
Source: Bridget Batson, Hawthorne Lane
1 bunch basil
3/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pinch chili flakes
1 anchovy filet, minced
5 large tomatoes, peeled seeded and chopped
Squash blossom filling
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons basil chiffonade
1 tablespoons olive oil
1 small yellow onion
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
1 small Japanese eggplant, peeled and diced
2 large balls fresh Italian buffalo mozzarella, chopped
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons basil, chopped
1 tablespoons parsley, chopped
12 male squash blossoms
1 cup all purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3 shiso leaves, chopped
1 cup cold water (up tp ½ cup more if needed)
For the basil oil
- For the basil oil, blanch and shock the bunch of basil.
- Squeeze the excess water out of the basil and combine in a blender with the olive oil.
- Puree thoroughly then strain through a double layer of cheesecloth. Reserve.
For the tomato fondue
- Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and heat.
- Add the garlic, chili flakes and anchovy and stir briskly, cook for garlic aroma then add the chopped tomato.
- Bring to a slow simmer then reduce heat to low and cook for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and add the virgin olive oil and basil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
For the squash blossom filling
- For the blossom filling, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the onion and garlic. Cook until the onion becomes soft then add the eggplant and cook until it too becomes soft.
- Transfer to a mixing bowl and cool. Add the two cheeses, the egg yolk and herbs. Mix well and season to taste with salt and pepper. Chill.
- When cold, pipe into the squash blossoms until they are loosely filled. Reserve.
For the batter
- For the batter, combine all ingredients and mix LIGHTLY. Add a bit more water if desired.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper and reserve.
Finishing the dish
- To finish the dish, dip the stuffed blossoms into the batter and deep-fry at 350 F. until they become golden brown. Remove to paper towels to drain.
- Ladle two ounces of the tomato fondue into the center of warm plates and place the fried blossoms in the center. Drizzle the basil oil around the rim of the plate and garnish with basil tips.