Cheese-filled fried blossoms make delicious use of abundant squash plants

With the countdown on until school starts, we have been having lots of family time at my momís house.

There is a slip and slide, fishing, numerous little dogs to play with and lots of eating.

Like many others, my squash plants are going crazy, so recently, we picked a handful of flowers then headed over to my momís to stuff them.

The chance of my kids liking them was minimal. My oldest, Emma, who is 11, would love them. The other two, probably not. I was OK with it, though. More for me, my mom and Emma.

We picked the flowers in the morning while they were open. Later in the day, Molly, 9, helped me mix the filling. It was obviously cheese, so she already had her mind made up that she would not be eating them, but she was happy to help anyway.

I took charge of the actual stuffing, which was challenging. The flowers tore a bit, but once the filling is spooned in, it acts like glue and the petals can be manipulated to encase the filling.

Clay, 7, helped Emma measure the batter ingredients. I have to admit, I have never used club soda in any recipe other than cocktails. The kids liked the scientific reaction that took place when the soda was added to the baking powder. You have to let the batter sit for about an hour.

I do not have a fryer, so I used a small sauce pan instead. I added about 4 inches of oil and heated it over medium-high heat. The kids helped dip the flowers into the batter, then I gently dropped them into the hot oil. It sizzles up and fries the flowers to golden brown within minutes.

We let them drain briefly on paper towels and continued until all the flowers were done. We ate them standing up in the kitchen, because I did not want them to get soggy. The faster you can get to them after frying, the better.

These were delicious, fabulous and really pretty while they lasted. As suspected, Molly did not even try them. Clay wasnít into them, either (too much cheese), but Emma, my mom and I were in heaven. There was a lot of batter left, so we scrounged for more things to fry. Guess what we had plenty of? Zucchini.

mpoitras@discoveryspeed.com. Margery Reed Poitras is a former professional chef who now cooks for her kids and occasionally for the more mature palate.