When we got our squash blossoms this week, it occurred to me to do a little reading up on them, since they are such a rarity in our shares. Here’s what I learned: the squash plant is self-pollinating and as such has two types of blossoms, male and female. The blossoms can easily be identified because the male has a stamen whereas the female has a bulge at the base which is the nascent fruit. Usually, when the farmer sells you blossoms, they are male, so always look for and remove the stamen before cooking with the flower, as the stamens are unpleasantly bitter.
Knowing that I had male and female fruits in the same share made me want to have a yin-yang zucchini dinner, which is how it occurred to me to make a double squash frittata. This recipe is easy, but it happens fast, so be sure you have all the elements ready to go before you begin.
1 medium squash, grated
3 – 4 zucchini blossoms
1/2 tsp sliced fresh mint
1/2 C grated Parmesan
1/4 C cream
salt and pepper
Set a rack to the center of the oven, and heat your oven as hot as it will go without putting it on the self-clean setting. Meanwhile, shred zucchini and Parmesan, cut your mint into ribbons, and halve the blossoms. Beat the eggs with the cream and add some salt and pepper.
Wrap the zucchini in a paper towel, and squeeze as much water out of it as you possibly can. Brown the zucchini in some butter, and then set aside. In a medium (7 – 8″) stainless saute pan, heat some butter over high heat until the whole mess is screaming hot. Quickly add in the squash and mint, and spread evenly around the pan. Top with eggs and then the cheese. As it cooks, press the blossoms into the top in a pleasing pattern.
After about 5 minutes, check that the bottom of the frittata is nicely brown. If it is, throw it into the oven. Once in the oven, switch the heat to the broil setting. Check after five minutes, and every two minutes thereafter. Once the top is set and the frittata is nicely brown, remove from the oven and serve!