I look forward to the Field’s Corner farmers market in Dorchester every summer. Unfortunately now I live a lot further away from this market, but today I was lucky enough to do some shopping there (and during National Farmers Market Week, no less!). My favorite part of this market is that it serves a large Vietnamese population from that neighborhood, so the vendors have a unique variety of fruits and veggies that you might not see elsewhere.
And each year, I can’t wait to get squash blossoms at this market – one of the only markets in the area that carries them! They’re priced well at that market too; $3 for a bunch of them.
Squash blossoms are the beautiful orange and yellow flowers that grow on squash and pumpkin plants, and are actually edible. Now, the most common way these are cooked – and the first way I tried them – was stuffed with cheese and deep fried, like a mozzarella stick. Of course, I wanted to find a much healthier way to cook these delicious delicacies.
I found a few soup recipes and decided to make some adjustments to make a super healthy version. The result? An amazingly delicious recipe that utilizes so much of what’s in season right now! I love this because it tastes super creamy even though you don’t use any actual cream. Instead, the combination of pureed potato with 1% milk gives that creamy texture you crave in a soup like this. And because you’re using some spicy peppers and the uniquely flavored squash blossoms, you get awesome flavor without tons of calories. Plus lots of veggies in one dish! What more could you ask for?
Okay, enough rambling – get to your market and make this asap!
Ok, crappy picture, I know. Photographing soup is actually surprisingly difficult.
Inspired Squash Blossom Soup
Original inspiration from The Vegetable Gardner
, but I’ve made lots of changes!
Makes 4 servings Ingredients:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
1 Cubanelle pepper, diced
1 long hot chile pepper, diced
1 Anaheim chile pepper, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
3 cups of low sodium chicken broth
1 red potato, chopped
1 bunch of approximately 20 squash blossoms
1 cup of milk
1 zucchini, chopped
1 ear of white corn
Black pepper to tasteDirections:
1) Heat olive oil in large pot. Add onion and peppers and sauté for 5 minutes until soft. A note on the peppers: I used what was at the market and what I already had in the fridge. You could easily substitute with poblanos, jalepeno, etc - whatever you like. My dish came out with just the right amount of spice!
2) Remove a large spoonful of onions and peppers (about 1/4 to 1/3) and reserve for later.
3) Add garlic to pot and sauté with remaining onions and peppers for another 1-2 minutes.
4) Add chicken broth and potato. Cover partially and simmer for 20 minute or until potatoes are tender.
5) While broth is simmering, prepare the squash blossoms. You’ll need to remove the stamen (that yellow fuzzy thing) from the inside. The easiest way I’ve found to do this is to just chop of a bit at the bottom of the flower and then shake it out (see the picture earlier in this post). Rinse the blossoms gently then slice into thin strips.
6) When potatoes are tender, add squash blossoms to the pot. Simmer for a few minutes and then use an immersion blender (or do batches in a regular blender) to puree until smooth.
7) Add milk, zucchini, and the kernels from 1 ear of white corn. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add reserved onions and peppers back to pot.
8) Add black pepper to taste and enjoy! Nutrition Analysis per serving
: 178 calories, 5 grams of fat, 1 gram saturated fat, 491 mg sodium, 29 grams carbohydrate, 4 grams of fiber, 9 grams of protein
Vitamin A: 16%, Vitamin C: 168%, Calcium: 12%, Iron: 10%
Plus tons of other vitamins and minerals!