Squash Blossom Heaven!

By Samantha Binkley

Wow! I’m just coming down from an incredible experience teaching this fun, vibrant group in Sunday’s squash blossom workshop class. The recipes were so much fun to prepare, and it was great getting to know all the new faces.

We started the class with our signature cocktail which was homemade lavender syrup with Prosecco garnished with fresh rosemary and lemon slices. It was so refreshing and light-the perfect start for a beautiful Sunday afternoon. Then we walked the gardens and visited the chickens. On the way, we passed the grapefruit tree which is full of fruit, and that’s how we began our class-preparing the grapefruit and rosemary sorbet. This recipe works great when you mince the rosemary, add it to the fresh grapefruit juice and let it the flavors steep together.

We then moved on to our heirloom tomato gazpacho with edamame mash, fresh crab and squash blossoms. This recipe is so easy and a delicious summery treat. The edamame and crab add protein, but you can always omit the crab for a vegan delight.

This class had an extra recipe, so we kept the pace going and jumped right into stuffing our squash blossoms with ricotta, mint and orange zest. We placed them on a white plate with an orange tomato sauce base and garnished with beautiful fresh basil.

Next up was our squash blossom risotto. This was a beautiful risotto using tender baby squash and the blossoms to create a lovely, cream-less risotto. The key to making this incredibly fresh and light? Add the baby squash when your rice is almost cooked and a little al dente-then garnish with a chiffonade of squash blossoms.

Last but not least-the squash blossom pizza! This is a fun one and also a great family cooking experience. We used both a pesto and tomato base for our whole wheat crust. A trick for the easy to make crust? Add my Healthy On You® Let The Good Thymes Toll spice blend to the dough for a nice herby flavor! The toppings: fresh mozzarella balls, roasted heirloom cherry tomatoes with my Healthy On You Herbes de Provence, asiago cheese and of course, squash blossoms and sliced baby squash.

In all, we went through a gorgeous five-pound box of squash blossoms with four new ways to use these delicious and in season edible flowers!