Cavatelli with mussels, saffron and zucchini flowers - recipe

Recipes / Italian Recipes
 23 Apr 2014   
Subscribe to yellowsaffron for more great recipes ➤ The cavatelli with mussels, saffron and zucchini flowers is a beautiful blend of Mediterranean flavors and colors, topped with scrumptious fried stuffed zucchini blossoms... impossible to resist! Find this and many more recipes with pictures on the Giallozafferano App (in English) *** Ingredients for 4 servings For the cavatelli • 2 cups (250 g) of durum wheat flour + as needed for the pastry board • 2 cups (250 g) of all-purpose flour • just over 1 cup (260 g) of water • 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil • 1 pinch of salt For the sauce • 7 oz (200 g) of zucchini flowers • 4 ½ lbs (2 kg) of mussels • ¼ tsp (0,5 g) of saffron powder • 1 clove of garlic • extra virgin olive oil, to taste • salt to taste • pepper to taste • chopped parsley, to taste For the batter • just under ½ cup (50 g) of flour • 2/3 cup (150 g) of sparkling water • ½ tsp of baking soda • salt to taste For filling the zucchini flowers • 2 oz (60 g) of burrata cheese • 4 sun-dried pachino tomatoes in oil For frying • 2 cups (500 ml) of vegetable oil In a large bowl, combine the all-purpose flour and the durum wheat flour, a pinch of salt, mix a bit, add the water and the oil. Bring the dough together in the bowl, turn it out onto the pastry board and continue to knead until nice and smooth. The dough has come together, wrap in cling film and let it rest in a cool place, but not in the fridge, for at least half an hour. Take a large pan, drizzle with the extra virgin olive oil and add a clove of garlic. To clean the mussels, remove the beard and scrub the shells under running water with a clean scourer, to remove any dirt. When the clove of garlic is golden brown, add the mussels to the pan, raise the heat a bit, cover with a lid and cook until they open. The mussels have opened completely. Remove the mussels from the shells and discard the shells, but leave 8 mussels attached to the bottom shell to use for garnish. Set the 8 mussels aside, then remove all the remaining shells and put the mussels in the pan. Dissolve the saffron in a small amount of the mussel cooking liquid, add the pepper and the chopped parsley and taste for salt. Our mussel saffron sauce is ready, so cover the pan with a lid and set aside, and move on to the zucchini flowers: pick 4 of the largest, prettiest blossoms that will be stuffed. Remove the green bits at the base of each flower and cut off the stem, but leave the bottom intact, so that the filling does not come out. Carefully open the flower, reach into it with your fingers and pull out the pistils. Fill the zucchini flower with a small piece of burrata cheese and a sun-dried tomato in oil that has been cut in half; gently twist the ends to secure and our stuffed zucchini flower is ready to be battered and fried. Repeat with the other 3 zucchini flowers. Move on to the remaining zucchini flowers, that will be added to the sauce at the last minute: in this case, remove the bottom end, including the calyx, the stem, the sepals and the pistils, so we'll use only the petals. You can simply pull the petals away from the stem part, then open the flower and tear lengthwise into 2 or 3 strips, in this way. Otherwise, remove first the green bits, then separate the corolla from the calyx. When all the flowers are cleaned, place in the fridge until needed. Repeat with all the remaining zucchini flowers. Prepare the batter for frying the stuffed zucchini flowers: sift the flour into a bowl, add the baking soda, the salt and the sparkling water. Stir well to avoid any lumps, then cover with cling film and place in the fridge. Move on to the cavatelli pasta: here's the dough, divide into small pieces and roll into ropes, about ½ inch (1 cm) thick, meanwhile keep the rest of the dough wrapped in cling film to avoid drying out. Cut the ropes into small pieces. Press the dough with two fingers and drag it towards you to create the distinctive shape of cavatelli. Place the cavatelli on a cloth, dusted with durum wheat flour, and leave to rest until needed. It's time to assemble the dish: bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the cavatelli until half-cooked, for about 3-4 minutes because they'll finish cooking with the mussel sauce. In the meantime, batter and fry the stuffed zucchini flowers: dip into the batter and deep-fry in vegetable oil, peanut oil is better, at 350°F (180°C) until nice and golden brown. It's time to drain the pasta: take the pan with the mussel saffron sauce, toss in the cavatelli and cook for a couple of minutes, then add the zucchini flowers, that have been cleaned and cut into strips. Cook on a high flame until the sauce has thickened and the pasta has absorbed the flavour. The 8 reserved mussels will be added at the end as a garnish.


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