Squash and Zucchini blossoms- when should I pick them?

My mom has some Japanese squash, zucchini and eggplant plants. This season has been a bit disappointing, but the plants are flowering and I was thinking of picking the ones that aren't fruiting. I've seen talk on here about eating the blossoms.
My question: When/what size should I pick them? Before cooking, do i need to prepare them a certain way?

One of my reservations is that the squash plant and flowers are rather prickly.... any suggestions?

Serious Eats Newsletters

Keep up with our latest recipes, tips, techniques and where to eat!


Comments can take up to a minute to appear - please be patient!

Previewing your comment: