1 carton of zucchini flowers, squash blossoms will work in this recipe as well.
200g raw cashews, soaked for 4 hours
1 clove of garlic, roughly chopped
1/4 cup of chives, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Grated rind of 1 small lemon
Juice of 1/2 small lemon
1 bottle of beer, room temperature, use whatever you drink. Try to stick with a yeastier beer, nothing too light. I used a Young Henry's ale for this recipe and it worked well.
1 cup of self raising flour
1/2 tsp salt
Oil for frying.
Quinoa and Nectarine Salad
1 cup of cooked quinoa (the rice absorption method with 2c water to 1c quinoa is my preferred method)
2 radishes, finely sliced
2 celery stalks, finely sliced
1/4 cup of sunflower seeds
1 small lebanese cucumber, seeds removed and finely sliced
1 carrot, grated
1 handfull of basil leaves, torn
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp maple syrup
First you need to make the cashew cheese.
Place the soaked cashews in a food processor or high speed blender along with the rest of the ingredients. Process, scraping down the sides as necessary, until the mix comes together to be slightly sticky and without any large chunks of cashew remaining.
Remove and place in a bowl in the fridge until needed.
Remove the stamen from the zucchini flowers delicately, with a small paring knife, or even a teaspoon will do.
To fill your flowers you'll need to use a little personal judgement, the amount of filling you'll need will depend on the size of your blossom, for these small blossoms I used around a teaspoon of filling, but have gone up to 2 tbsp for large squash blossoms.
Gently pull apart the flower, being careful not to tear the petals.
Scoop in a tsp of the cashew cheese mixture and push gently to the bottom of the flower. Pull the petals around it and place close to their original positioning, trying to get a little seal around the mixture.
Fill all the flowers and place on a plate in the fridge until ready to fry.
Next prepare your salad by combining all of the ingredients and set aside in the fridge until needed.
Make your balsamic glaze by placing the ingredients into a small pan and simmering on low until the mixture has a viscose texture. You can use sugar in place of maple syrup if your prefer.
To prepare the batter place the flour and salt in a bowl and whisk to combine.
Next pour in the beer and whisk gently until just combined Small lumps are fine, but we don't want any big chunks of flour.
This mixture should be about the consistency of a crepe batter. If it seems to runny add in a little more flour, if it's too thick pour in a splash of water or a little more beer.
Next heat up your oil on medium heat. It's up to you if you want to deep fry or shallow fry. I prefer to shallow fry for the sake of not using all that oil, and the ease when I have a small, non-stick pan.
To test your oil is ready drop in a small drop of batter. If it gently fries and turns a nice golden brown you're ready to go.
Don't overcrowd your pan, I fried just 3 or 4 at a time, resting the rest on a pan with kitchen paper to soak up the excess oil and a sprinkle of salt over the top.
When all of your blossoms are ready it's time to serve!
Use a spoon to spread your glaze on the plate in a circular motion.
Place a heap of the salad in the centre.
Top with a couple of zucchini flowers, an extra dollop of cashew cheese, a garnish of basil leaf and a lemon wedge.
This recipe should serve four people a large entree sized meal.