Bangladeshi Kumrar Phool Bhaja (fried courgette flowers)
Updated: Aug 27, 2018
Courgette flowers are eaten in a variety of ways around the world, the Italian tradition of stuffing them first is perhaps the best known. In the Bangladeshi kitchen courgette flowers are eaten simply fried in a rice flour batter; crispy, crunchy and just gently spiced with cumin, turmeric and chilli powder. This preparation varies from family to family but this is how we like to eat them. You can also use this batter to coat and fry pretty much any thinly sliced vegetable; courgette slices, large chilli peppers split in half and fresh leaves of kale.
Ingredients (serves 6)
25-30 courgette flowers, cleaned, rinsed and dried
100g plain flour
100g rice flour
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
3/4 tsp salt
300ml cold water
oil, to deep fry
whisk together the flours, salt and spices with enough cold water to form a loose batter. Rest 15 minutes.
Prepare the flowers by chopping off just above the stem and removing the stamen inside as well the spiky green base of the flower. Rise and gently pat dry.
Heat oil in a deep frying pan or karahi over medium high heat. You can check to see if the oil is ready by dropping a small piece of bread or spoon of batter and see if it quickly rises to the surface.
Whisk the batter again - it should be fairly runny. Now fry the flowers in 3-4 batches. Dip each flower in the batter and ensure both sides are coated. Gently slide out against the edge of the bowl so the excess batter falls off and quickly drop into the oil.
Once a batch (5-6) is in the pan lower the heat to low-medium and flip over using a spatula and fork after about a minute. They will need 3-4 minutes of cooking time. Make sure to keep a close eye on them, turning a few times, and once light golden drain with a slotted spoon onto kitchen paper and serve immediately.