One underwhelmed, and the other was a joyous discovery
I don't always buy ingredients because I need to. Sometimes I buy something because I have seen it around for so long that my interest in it has been intrigued, sometimes because it is a hot trendy favorite, and sometimes because it looks too darned pretty to ignore.
With squash blossoms it was all of the above, and I had to finally give in and try them out at least once, so I bought a box without any specific ideas or recipes in mind. As I had known, I found that the most popular way to consume these was to stuff them with cheese and fry them in a flour batter. Naturally, I wanted to put an Indian twist on it, and also skip the cheese.
I made a loose batter with besan, water, salt, pinch of chili powder, and a pinch of ajwain (owa seeds). I intentionally kept the batter neither too thick nor too spicy so that I could discern the flavor and taste of the flowers. Dipped each flower gently into the batter, shook off the excess and deep fried in oil.
After the entire batch of flowers had been fried up, I had a little more batter left so I dipped in some large basil leaves that had been bought on the same day and were very fresh and firm, and fried those too. These little critters were a surprising joy to behold, as they turned into crisp and crackling morsels in the batter.
There is not much to complain about deep fried anything most of the time, but I was not too taken by the flowers this time, although I loved the batter fried basil! Still, I thought I would post this. For those fascinated by the idea of eating flowers, or for those who like squash blossoms otherwise, this might help. Plus, it is just so right to send to Rachna for JFI: Flower Power as well as to Rushina for her Pakora Contest.