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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Zucchini Blossom Open Sandwiches

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zucchini blossom sandwich

The first time I had zucchini flowers was in Mexico City, where I first tasted a very popular Mexican dish: sopa de flor de calabaza, or zucchini flower soup. It was a wonderful experience and until then I had never thought of zucchini flowers as food. I probably never thought of zucchini flowers, period. But everything changed after that soup, and now I look forward to finding the perfect  blossoms every summer and making different dishes with them. The season for zucchini blossoms is very short, which only contributes to the excitement I get when I can cook with them.

This year, I tried a few new things. These open face sandwiches are the first of a short series of zucchini blossom recipes I will be posting – hope you all enjoy!

Zucchini Blossom Open Sandwiches

This is merely a recipe, and more  an idea, a source of inspiration for you to make your own sandwiches. The ingredients can be changed according to your taste, just keeping in mind that the blossoms are delicate in texture and flavor, so avoid overpowering ingredients.

Tomato, Goat Cheese and Blossom Sandwich Recipe:

Zucchinis come to season together with tomatoes, which is why we see so many recipes that call for both of them. I like using heirloom tomatoes in different colours to make it more interesting, but any tomato would work well here.

Tomatoes

Goat cheese

Chopped fresh basil

Zucchini blossoms

Bread (it can  be sliced bread or a loaf of bread, sliced)

Garlic (optional)

Salt and pepper

Olive oil (extra virgin is better)

Slice the tomatoes thinly and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Combine the goat cheese with  chopped basil, season with salt and pepper to taste and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, enough to flavour the cheese as well as make it more spreadable. Set aside.

To prepare the zucchinis like in the photo, cut of the stems and open each one of them flat, with the inside part facing up. Gently clean the inside of the flowers, removing most of the pollen with a wet paper or cloth towel.

If you would like to make a garlic toast, simply bake the bread slices quickly in the oven or in the grill, then rub a garlic clove on it. Do not overdo it or the garlic taste may overpower the sandwich.

To assemble the sandwiches, spread a layer of cheese, top with the seasoned tomatoes and finish with a layer of blossoms (the outside of the leaves facing up).zucchini flower sandwich

Zucchini, Ricotta, and Dill Blossom Sandwich Recipe:

If dill is not your thing, try using parsley. You can also add a few drops of lemon juice to the sandwich just before serving.

Ricotta

Fresh dill

Bread

Salt and pepper

Olive oil (extra virgin is better)

Zucchini, finely sliced

Zucchini flowers, cleaned and sliced into ribbons

Season the ricotta with salt, pepper, add a splash of olive oil and chopped dill to taste. Mix well.

Smear the slices of bread with ricotta, top with the sliced zucchini and the blossom ribbons.

zucchini blossom sandwiches

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