I’ve probably mentioned how much I love Sunday mornings in the summer. I love getting up early, tossing on a sundress and walking to the bakery up the street for an iced coffee, then continuing on to the farmer’s market in Wicker Park.
The streets are incredibly peaceful on Sunday mornings when the shops are closed and most of my neighbors are still asleep. I love meandering through the market, picking out the best produce, wandering through the stalls smelling the scent of peaches and fresh flowers.
Today, I spent some time picking through the gorgeous cherry tomatoes in every color…red, purple and gold. And I couldn’t resist the giant bunches of basil and beautiful squash blossoms. And some fresh mozzarella cheese made by a local cheesemonger. So, home I went to make lunch.
The basil was sliced thin, and the cheese was diced into bite-sized squares. The tomatoes were tossed into the bowl with a sprinkle of salt and pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Once on the serving plate, a few drips of basalmic vinegar finished things off.
The squash blossoms took a bit more time, but not much. I’ve never worked with them before but fondly remember my parents waxing poetically about enjoying them in Tuscany a few summers ago. The blossoms are delicate, but easy to work with. I opened the petals and pulled the yellow stamen out of each but, removed the stems and then stuffed each flower with a mixture of garlic, cheese and basil. Twist the petals shut and dip the little purses into a beaten egg, then dredge in flour seasoned with salt and pepper…I used cake flour for a light texture. The blossoms were fried in canola oil until golden and drained on paper towels.
The blossoms are crispy and light, with a little burst of flavor in each bite. Yum.
Served alongside the tomatoes, they made for a delicious, summery, lazy lunch.