Squash Blossom

Squash blossoms are the flowers produced by any number of fruiting vines.  Some common examples are zucchini, pumpkin, and other various types of squash.  Although considered a vegetable in culinary circles, squash are technically a fruit.

Squash blossoms are either male or female, the male blossoms provide pollen, the female flowers produce a fruit body (zucchini, pumpkin, etc…) and may even be found attached to a small young squash.

Squash blossoms are very colorful and have a mild floral flavor.  They are most commonly battered and fried, but they can be stuffed with cheese, added raw to salads, baked, and added to soups or risotto…  Their mild flavor make them popular in recipes with other mild ingredients, like a cheese stuffing or fried in tempura batter.  Squash’s universal appeal makes them popular in many ethnic cuisines, particularly in Mexico and the Mediterranean.

Being as light and delicate as they are, squash blossoms aren’t a highly nutritional food.  One cup of squash blossoms only has five calories!  It also has one gram of carbohydrates and less than one gram of protein, just to give you the picture.  That said, squash blossoms are high in calcium and iron and especially high in vitamins C and A.  So, they aren’t just lookers.

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