Antipasto of summer squashes and courgettes

Serves 4-6

There are some interesting summer squashes around now, including acorn squash, onion squash and butternut, the old faithful which these days seems to be readily available for most of the year.

I've added some deep-fried courgette flowers to this dish. They can be picked from the male courgette plants that don't develop a courgette, or you can buy them from specialist greengrocers. Farmers' markets may also sell the flowers, and you can use squash or pumpkin flowers if you come across those instead while you're looking.

A simple batter can be made by mixing together equal quantities of flour and cornflour along with some finely grated Parmesan and baking powder, and mixing to a smooth paste with water and seasoning, or you can cheat and use a tempura batter mix which always comes out well. The flowers are then dipped in the batter and fried until crisp.

Just to add to the flavour I've drizzled the cooked squashes and courgettes with toasted pumpkin-seed oil which you can buy from good delis.

1 squash, such as an acorn, cut into segments and seeded, with the skin left on
1 medium-sized butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 2-3cm chunks
2 large courgettes, cut lengthways into 1cm-thick strips
4-5tbsp olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1-2tbsp pumpkin seed oil
1tbsp pumpkin seeds, lightly toasted
2tbsp pesto, thinned down with olive oil for the deep-fried courgette flowers
8 courgette flowers
1tbsp cornflour
1tbsp flour
tsp baking powder
tbsp grated Parmesan
Water to mix

Heat a heavy-bottomed frying pan with a little oil. Season and cook the squashes on a medium heat until lightly coloured then finish them in an oven pre-heated to 200C/ gas mark 6 for 15-20 minutes, or until tender. Leave to cool.

Meanwhile, heat a ribbed griddle plate brushed with a little olive oil, or a heavy frying pan, and lightly season and cook the courgette strips for about 4-5 minutes on each side, then remove from the heat and leave to cool. Pre-heat about 8cm of oil to 160-180C in a large, thick-bottomed frying pan, or use an electric deep-fat fryer. Dip the courgette flowers into the batter, then into the hot fat and fry until crisp, removing with a slotted spoon.

To serve, arrange the squashes and courgettes on a serving dish and drizzle with the pesto and pumpkin-seed oil and scatter the pumpkin seeds and courgette flowers on top.

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Life and Style
ebooksFrom the lifespan of a slug to the distance to the Sun: answers to 500 questions from readers
News
peopleGerman paper published pictures of 18-month-old daughter
Arts and Entertainment
'A voice untroubled by time': Kate Bush
musicKate Bush set to re-enter album charts after first conerts in 35 years
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Williams' life story will be told in a biography written by a New York Times reporter
arts + ents
News
i100
Life and Style
food + drink
Life and Style
Voices
voices
Sport
Roger Federer is greeted by Michael Jordan following his victory over Marinko Matosevic
tennisRoger Federer gets Michael Jordan's applause following tweener shot in win over Marinko Matosevic
News
peopleJustin Bieber accuses paparazzi of acting 'recklessly' after car crash
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Oppressive atmosphere: the cast of 'Tyrant'
tvIntroducing Tyrant, one of the most hotly anticipated dramas of the year
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    Business Development Manager / Sales Pro

    £30 - 35k + Uncapped Comission (£70k Y1 OTE): Guru Careers: A Business Develop...

    Graduate Sales Executive / Junior Sales Exec

    £18k + Uncapped Commission (£60k Y1 OTE): Guru Careers: A Graduate Sales Exe...

    Web Developer / Software Developer

    £25 - 60k (DOE): Guru Careers: A Web Developer / Software Developer is needed ...

    Oracle 11g SQL 2008 DBA (Unix, Oracle RAC, Mirroring, Replicati

    £6000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: Oracle 11...

    Day In a Page

    Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

    Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

    A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
    Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

    The science of herding is cracked

    Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
    Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

    This tyrant doesn’t rule

    It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?
    Rachael Lander interview: From strung out to playing strings

    From strung out to playing strings

    Award-winning cellist Rachael Lander’s career was almost destroyed by the alcohol she drank to fight stage fright. Now she’s playing with Elbow and Ellie Goulding
    The science of saturated fat: A big fat surprise about nutrition?

    A big fat surprise about nutrition?

    The science linking saturated fats to heart disease and other health issues has never been sound. Nina Teicholz looks at how governments started advising incorrectly on diets
    Emmys 2014 review: Can they genuinely compete with the Oscars

    Can they genuinely compete with the Oscars?

    The recent Emmy Awards are certainly glamorous, but they can't beat their movie cousins
    On the road to nowhere: A Routemaster trip to remember

    On the road to nowhere

    A Routemaster trip to remember
    Hotel India: Mumbai's Taj Mahal Palace leaves its darker days behind

    Hotel India

    Mumbai's Taj Mahal Palace leaves its darker days behind
    10 best pencil cases

    Back to school: 10 best pencil cases

    Whether it’s their first day at school, uni or a new project, treat the student in your life to some smart stationery
    Arsenal vs Besiktas Champions League qualifier: Gunners know battle with Turks is a season-defining fixture

    Arsenal know battle with Besiktas is a season-defining fixture

    Arsene Wenger admits his below-strength side will have to improve on last week’s show to pass tough test
    Pete Jenson: Athletic Bilbao’s locals-only transfer policy shows success does not need to be bought

    Pete Jenson: A Different League

    Athletic Bilbao’s locals-only transfer policy shows success does not need to be bought
    This guitar riff has been voted greatest of all time

    The Greatest Guitar Riff of all time

    Whole Lotta Votes from Radio 2 listeners
    Britain’s superstar ballerina

    Britain’s superstar ballerina

    Alicia Markova danced... every night of the week and twice on Saturdays
    Berlin's Furrie invasion

    Berlin's Furrie invasion

    2000 fans attended Eurofeurence
    ‘It was a tidal wave of terror’

    ‘It was a tidal wave of terror’

    Driven to the edge by postpartum psychosis