Greetings from Greece! We’re in the middle of our summer holiday where I’ve been beaching it with the kids and furiously finishing the last chapters of my book. I’d taken a wee hiatus from bogging –and from the Internet in general– with the intention of catching everyone up on our adventures when we returned to the states. And yet here I am; compelled to hop on the blog to tell you something that has blown my mind.
Before I delve into the joys and wonder of this edible flower, I should remind you that I know next to nothing about growing my own produce. If you’ve been reading here for a while, you already know that my knowledge of growing things is pretty much limited to herbs and the hardest-to-kill house plants. I have always wanted to attempt a garden of my own, but haven’t made it a priority.
Here on the island, however, we have the luxury of enjoying a well-developed garden without having to deal with the planting. Since my parents are here for only three months, they have someone plant the garden months before they arrive so that when we get here, it’s bounty is plentiful. Along with zucchini, we have cucumbers, bell peppers, eggplant, hot peppers, green onions and cherry tomatoes. If you also consider the cherry, pear and apricot trees that produce, we can exist almost solely on what we grow.
Okay, back to the zucchini blossoms. If you’ve ever planted zucchini, you know that each plant produces an abundance of vegetables. Each zucchini grows at the stem of the flower (or so I hear) and by cutting the blossoms, you’re controlling the number of zucchini that you will have. This is a good thing because there are only so many zucchini that you can eat in any given week. I’ll confess that I didn’t give eating the blossoms a second thought until a couple of weeks ago when we went to a restaurant run by my childhood friend. In typical Greek fashion, we ordered a dozen dishes (family-style) based on the recommendation of the chef. One of the dishes he brought out was a zucchini blossom stuffed with cheese and then fried. Oh. my. word. It was so decadent and delicious. As I was exclaiming my delight, my mom casually mentions that we have at least a dozen blossoms in the garden every morning.
Suddenly, my summer mission became clear: Learn how to cook zucchini blossoms a dozen different ways. The first recipe I wanted to share with you is this zucchini blossom and feta cheese omelette. It is honest to goodness the most delicious omelette I’ve ever had, which is saying something since I really don’t like the taste of eggs.
The ingredients are simple: farm fresh eggs, a splash of milk, zucchini blossoms (one per egg), feta cheese, salt and pepper. (pretend that you see feta in the picture above)
First, crack your eggs into a deep bowl, add a splash of milk and beat with a fork until they’re well-blended and airy. Next, dice your zucchini blossoms (discarding the base) with a sharp knife and add them to the egg mixture.
Crumble a chunk of feta cheese (I use about a one square inch piece per egg) in the egg mixture and season with salt and pepper. Mix everything together well and set aside.
In a medium-hot pan, melt a tablespoon or two of butter.Add the egg mixture to the pan, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and be patient.
The omelette is done when the middle is no longer runny.
Serve it up with some feta cheese for garnish, then sit back and wait to be completely and utterly surprised at how tasty this is! Next up, I’m going to try to recreate the cheese-stuffed fried blossoms that started my obsession. I’ll keep you posted on the progress, but I’m determined to have nailed it before we leave in a couple of weeks. Cross your fingers!