Use zucchini blossoms that measure 3 to 4½ inches in length from base to tip of blossom. Do not omit the vodka; it is critical for a crisp coating. Using a twirling motion (like winding a watch) when dipping the blossoms in the batter encourages the petals to twist closed around the filling. Use a Dutch oven that holds 6 quarts or more for this recipe. Be sure to begin mixing the batter when the oil reaches 325 degrees (the final temperature should be 350 degrees).
Total Time: 1 hour
1. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with double
layer of paper towels. In medium bowl, stir ricotta,
Pecorino, 1 egg, mint, lemon zest, salt, and pepper
until smooth; set aside. Trim blossom stems to 1
inch and remove spiny leaves at base of flowers.
Gently peel open petals and remove pistil and any
dirt inside. Briefly rinse outsides of blossoms with
water. Shake off excess water, then arrange blossoms on 1 prepared sheet. Pat blossoms dry with
2. Spoon ricotta mixture into zipper-lock bag
and snip off 1 corner to create ½-inch opening.
Working with 1 blossom at a time, pipe enough
filling into blossom to fill green base, stopping just
before orange petals begin. Gently twist petals to seal
in filling, then transfer to prepared sheet. Refrigerate
until ready to fry.
3. Add oil to large Dutch oven until it measures
about 1½ inches deep and heat over medium-high
heat to 350 degrees. While oil heats, whisk flour and
cornstarch together in large bowl. Whisk vodka and
remaining 1 egg together in medium bowl. Whisk
seltzer into egg mixture. When oil reaches 325
degrees, pour seltzer mixture into flour mixture and
gently whisk until just combined (it is OK if small
4. When oil reaches 350 degrees, hold 1 blossom
by stem and twirl through batter until coated. Lift
blossom, allowing excess batter to drip back into
bowl, then gently lower into oil. Moving quickly but
carefully, repeat with 7 blossoms. Fry until crisp and
lightly golden, about 2 minutes, adjusting burner, if necessary, to maintain oil temperature of 350
degrees. Using slotted spoon, transfer blossoms to
second prepared sheet and season with salt to taste.
5. Return oil to 350 degrees and repeat with
remaining 8 blossoms. Serve immediately.