Squash have edible blossoms that you can eat raw or cooked. Both summer and winter squash blossoms are edible.
It is recommended that you pick male blossoms because female blossoms are the fruit producers, unless you want to reduce production. Male blossoms are easily distinguished from the female blossoms. The stem of the male blossom is thin and trim. The stem of the female blossom is very thick. At the base of the female flower, below the petals, is a small bulge where the squash is developing.
Gently rinse the blossoms in a pan of cool water and store in ice water in the refrigerator until ready to use. The flowers can be stored for a few hours or up to 1 or 2 days. The blossoms can be battered and fried in a little oil for a wonderful taste sensation. Another way to prepare them is to sautée the blossoms in olive oil and garlic for a few minutes, then serve.
Additional nutrition information can be found at: http://missourifamilies.org.
Contributor: Maude Harris, Nutrition and Health Education Specialist, University of Missouri Extension, firstname.lastname@example.org, 573.545.3516