Simple Zucchini Blossom Pasta

  • Jul 18, 2018

Last week we launched our incredible new website (which you’re navigating through right now, yay!). We’re so happy with it now. It feels like us, we can show you more recipes and content at first glance, and we have new content categories for us to play with. Also, it’s more pink.

Honestly, it started off as a bit of a nightmare to create – we used a developer who kept letting us down, we can’t code and had to migrate all of our recipes from our previous host to the new one…. Long story short, we eventually asked two of Tamzyn’s friends who are incredible developers – Bert and Robin – and together they whipped this baby into shape quick smart. Why am I rambling on about coding? Well, for some weird reason it feels a bit like we’ve just cleaned house. Big time. A Spring cleaning just before Spring in Cape Town. And what’s most “Spring” than blossoms?

Last year, we deep-fried some beautiful zucchini blossoms in a vegan beer batter. We’ve missed them ever since. That was one of our first truly experimental and spontaneous cooks together. Although it seems like a basic recipe, neither of us had tried it before – and that was exciting!

The edible flower of zucchinis is a delicate and ephemeral treat. Squash blossoms are soft, delicate, and taste mildly like the squash itself – but with a hint of perfume.

The plant has two kinds of blossoms, male and female. If you’re growing the squash yourself, the male ones are there to fertilize but never actually produce squash themselves. Males have no pistils, grow on long stalks, and are slender, whereas females grow closer to the centre of the plant and have a bulbous end. Just pick the males and you’ll still have the delicious squash later grown from the females.

When we visited the Oranjezicht City Farm Market recently, we were surprised to see these floral treats for sale. It’s not near Spring yet! But the weather has been oscillating back and forth so here we are with a dish that represents just that – an in-between state, our in-between palates and in-between cravings.

A marriage of blossom, pasta, pepper and lemon. Oh, and a healthy dose of olive oil. Fresh but warming. Spring but Winter. Inbetween. These flavours are simple, well-known and easy to prepare.

With such a minimalist approach, one has to find the very best ingredients to let them shine and truly make the meal worthwhile. When something is in season, it is naturally fuller with flavour. It’s in those moments throughout the year that we should relish in them – and then love them more because we know that their season is fleeting.

There are all those Pinterest quotes (yes, you know the ones) about letting something go, and if it’s meant to be, it’ll come back.
Well, I’m not quite announcing my nuptials here, but there’s no denying the magic in missing something.

Let us know if you make this pasta, and what you thought of the wonderful squash blossoms!

Simple Zucchini Blossom Pasta
Servings: 2
Ingredients
  • 3-4 Medium sized Zucchinis sliced on a diagonal
  • 2 Cloves Garlic finely chopped
  • 8 Zucchini Blossoms rinsed with the stems and pistils removed
  • Quinoa Spaghetti Pasta Can be bought through Faithful to Nature
  • Salt and Pepper
  • *Lemon juiced
  • *Pine Nuts
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil, add your quinoa spaghetti and cook for the recommended 10-12 minutes, until al denté.
  2. In a large pan over medium heat, add a drizzle of olive oil and sauteé your garlic for 2-3 minutes until it just starts browning and, add your sliced zucchini. Cook for a further 4-6 minutes until the zucchini is cooked through. We like al denté here too.

  3. With your fingers, open the petals to make sure there aren’t any insects inside (this is common, don’t freak out) and use your fingertips or scissors to snip off the pistils and stamens (the parts that look like little wires).

  4. Rinse your blossoms well and gently remove excess water. Give 'em a little shake. 

  5. At this point add your zucchini blossoms to the pan and gently move them around for another 2 minutes.

  6. Add 1/4 cup of your pasta water to your zucchini blossom pan and cook for a further few minutes.

  7. Remove your pasta from the heat and rinse well. Once rinsed, add your pasta to your zucchini blossom pan and gently toss to combine all the ingredients.
  8. Add an extra glug of olive oil and your optional squeeze of lemon juice and pepper.

  9. Split your pasta between 2 and serve immediately.
  10. Enjoy!
Recipe Notes

Lemon juice and pine nuts are an optional extra, not necessary but will definitely add to the dish.

 

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