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Courgette flowers stuffed with pistou, pea purée and Manchego cheese

Summery courgette flowers are stuffed with a tomato paste and served with a bright green pea purée, mint oil and cubes of Spanish cheese in this lovely looking starter.

Ingredients

For the pistou
For the courgette flowers
  • 8 courgette flowers

  • 100g/3½oz flour

  • 2 eggs, beaten

  • Ingredients for the pea purée

  • salt and pepper, to taste

  • 400g/14oz peas

  • 2 sprigs of fresh mint, leaves only

To serve

Preparation method

  1. For the pistou, heat a large pan and add the oil. Once hot, add all the vegetables and tinned tomatoes and cook on a medium heat until the flavours are mingled - this will take 8-12 minutes. Allow it cool.

  2. Heat a deep fat fryer to 180C/350F (Caution: hot oil can be dangerous. Do not leave unattended).

  3. Roll the flowers in flour then dip in the beaten egg coat them. Deep fry the flowers for a couple of minutes until crisp. Carefully remove from the fryer and drain on a plate lined with kitchen roll.

  4. For the pea purée, heat a large saucepan of boiling water and season with salt. Blanch the peas and then drain and allow to cool.

  5. Place the peas and mint leaves into a blender and blend to make a purée. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

  6. To serve, place the pea purée on the plate along with the courgette flowers. Top with the pea shoots and Manchego cheese and drizzle with the mint oil.

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