| Menus |

Taste-Testing Squash Blossoms at Hugo's

Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

One of the best ways to celebrate the summer season is by cooking beautiful fruit and vegetables, especially squash blossoms.

Often found at local farmer's markets, squash blossoms are the edible flowers from zucchini and summer squash, and they are only available for a short period of time during the summer.

Not only are these bright orange/yellow flowers beautiful to look at, they make versatile cooking ingredients -- as evidenced by Hugo's squash blossom menu. Chef Hugo Ortega uses squash blossoms in everything from soups, salads and ceviches to quesadillas, enchiladas and tostadas. This story continues on the next page.

The day we were there, there were two squash blossom appetizer specials available: flores de calabaza rellenas (goat cheese-stuffed squash blossoms) and quesadillas de flor de calabaza (quesadillas stuffed with squash blossoms).

The flowers stuffed with goat cheese are simply gorgeous. Each is grilled, creating a charred exterior and smoky flavor. The goat cheese is warm, creamy and mixed with a combination of sautéed onions, corn and scallions. As you bite into the crunchy, crispy flower, you're hit with an explosion of smooth and rich goat cheese filling. The sliced radish garnish with crumbled cheese adds an extra refreshing touch to the dish.

For a heavier, yet still light, appetizer, I recommend the squash blossoms quesadillas. Hugo's fills three blue corn tortillas with sautéed squash blossoms, Chihuahua cheese and sweet diced onions. The softened flowers still have an excellent crunch, despite being smashed and wilted. Make the perfect bite by dunking the quesadilla filled with stringy cheese and the squash blossom filling into the spicy, thick red salsa.

I hope the shrimp and squash blossom tostadas or chile relleno (stuffed with blossoms, Chihuahua cheese, squash and corn) are available during my next visit.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.