Squash Blossums Anishinaabeg Style
1 egg yolk
2 cups ice-cold water
1/8 tsp baking soda
1 2/3 cups white flour
Whip the egg yolk and baking soda into the water in a large dipping bowl. Sift in the flour, mix well. Batter should be thin, rather watery, run easily off a spoon. It should be used no more than 10 minutes after made, i.e. still bre quite cold when it hits the frying oil. Dip blossom, twirl to coat thoroughly, Turn after 1 minute and
fry 1 minute longer, lighter gold than the cornmeal coating in the Pueblo version. Sprinkle with sifted powdered sugar while still draining and hot from the oil. Keep warm in oven. Alternatively: omit sugar, serve with small dipping bowls of or berry syrup.
Traditionally, the flowers were used in soups and stews in 2 ways. In the commonest, they were thickeners -- put in at the beginning, the fragile flowers cooked away into the broth and had no individual identity. Put in near the end, they were heated through, softened a bit (especially th female blossoms, which have tiny squashes or
pumpkins forming at the stem end) as a sort of vegetable -- although the rest of the soup or stew was likely to be full of dried berries, so maybe I should say as another fruit.
Up north here, these fritters were traditionally made with pumpkin and squash flowers too. No chile or cumin was used, and about 1/2 tsp (or no) salt. A batter of flour would be more likely to be used than cornmeal if there was a good trade supply of it, because although some corn was raised, it was nowhere near as much as in the southwest, and a bit farther north of the Great Lakes, the growing season is too
short for curcurbitae.
The blossoms were most often eaten as a sweet with maple syrup or sprinkled with maple sugar -- and that's still a great way to eat these fritters, too -- blossom-beignets. You can also sprinkle them with sifted powdered sugar, as with New Orleans beignets.