This morning, like any traditional bengali household, my father came back from the local market with a bag full of fresh vegetables and fish. As he put down his bag, I saw the lovely bright yellow hand picked pumpkin blossoms ( kumro phool) peeping out of the bag. “KUMRO PHOOL !!!!” I exclaimed in delight.
There are a number of plants that in entirety fall prey to a Bengali meal :). Kumro (pumpkin/squash) being one of them. Bengalis know just the perfect recipes to make each and every part of pumpkin, not only edible but also a culinary delight. Flowers or kumro phool are edible too. These bright yellow flowers have very delicate petals. The petals softens very easily once plucked.
Back in Bangalore , we have planted a pumpkin plant in our balcony. The plant bares flowers occasionally, though not sufficient to serve all of us. These delicate flowers cannot be preserved in a refrigerator. It has to cooked the day it blooms, before its petals wither.
My mother makes these simple yet awesome crispy fritters with kumro phool. There are a number of variations that can be tried with kumro phool, mostly being stuffed with stuffing of your choice. These fritters go very well with bengali meal or with puffed rice (muri) as snacks or simply as it is. Yes, we like it as it is. By the time my mother fried the last two, father and me had already finished the rest :). This is how I’ve liked it since childhood.
Here’s her recipe.
What you need:
- Fresh pumpkin blossom (kumro phool) – 4/5
- Bengal gram flour (besan) – 1 small cup
- Oil for deep frying
- Pinch of onion seeds (kala jeera)
- 1 tspn poppy seeds
- Pinch of turmeric powder and chilli powder
- salt to taste
How to make:
- Cut the stalk of the flowers and remove the thick yellow stamen inside the flower. Wash the flowers and keep aside.
- Make batter with bengal gram. Add salt, poppy seeds, onion seeds, turmeric powder, chilli powder and mix well. Add water to make a thick batter.
- Heat oil in a wok.
- Dip each flower in the batter and deep fry till golden brown.