A Healthier Way to Stuff Your Zucchini Flowers

You know, sometimes I wonder who the guy was that decided eating that white round thing that comes out of a chicken’s butt was a good idea…

Amiright?

And how about drinking milk? I mean I know we’ve breastfed our babes from the beginning of time but who was the guy that thought it was a good idea to drink milk that comes out of a cow/goat/sheep?

And, hey, I’m not knocking this one bit.  I’m all for ingenuity ’cause I loooove eggs and I’d kill someone if they told me I could never eat cheese again (and, yes, I’m lactose intolerant…and yes, I still eat cheese…that’s how much I like cheese). So, good on ya, guy that thought these were good ideas…

And, was it the same guy that decided to eat flowers?  ‘Cause I think I need to find this guy…he must be my spirit animal.

Seriously.

Because every summer, when I munch on some freshly picked/stuffed/crisped zucchini flowers, I cry a little tear because I know the season is so short.

My go to is battered and fried the old fashioned way (like this post) but I know a few people who just won’t partake because of the “deep fried” part.

So, it got me thinking…can I “healthify” this treat?

Well, what do you think? Of course you can!!

Freshly picked and “de-stamened”, they are ready to be crowned the best snack…like evahhhh!

Filled with a ricotta filling, run through and egg wash and coated in panko, these are a treat that anyone would love!!

And if you have some extra flowers and filling around but don’t want to mess about with the coating, the stuffed unadorned flowers look so pretty on top of a frittata (find the recipe here in this Instagram post)

So, go ahead and whip some of these babies up…

If you cook it, they will come.

Promise.

A Healthier Way to Stuff Your Zucchini Flowers
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Cook time: 
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Serves: 10
 
Love deep fried zucchini flowers but they don't love you back? Well, here is a healthier version of this summer treat...crisp, crunchy and screaming of Italian summer goodness, these nuggets will be the talk of your next party for sure!!
Ingredients
  • 10 or so zucchini flowers
  • 1 c fresh ricotta
  • ¼ c freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4-6 large basil leaves
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 eggs,beaten
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • Cooking spray (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 and line a baking sheet with parchment.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta, chopped basil, Parmesan, and salt/pepper; mix well and scoop into a Ziploc bag.
  3. Get your flowers ready by prying open the petals (be really gentle) and check for dirt/insects; pull off the stamen (the fuzzy middle part).
  4. Snip off the end of the plastic bag and push the end of the bag deep into the flower like this. Pipe the ricotta into the flower (push the bag and pull out as you fill the cavity).
  5. Close the end by gently curling up the ends, enclosing the filling.
  6. Dip each stuffed flower into the egg wash and then into the panko, coating well.
  7. Place on a cookie sheet and, for an extra crispy crunch, spray the flowers with cooking spray.
  8. Bake in the preheated oven for 10-12 minutes or until golden.
  9. Sprinkle with another dusting of sea salt if desired and serve immediately.
 

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