Slice the onion like a blossom by cutting the top 1/4 off (the top has the stem). Then peel the onion but make sure the root stays intact. Carefully slice the onion from the top down stopping about 1/2" above the root (take care not to cut through the root). Slice the rest of the onion like a pie into several servings.
Soak the onion in ice-cold water for about 30 minutes until the onion's petals open up and bloom.
Heat oil to 350 degrees.
Drain the onion and dip in flour mixture and dust thoroughly. Dip onion then in buttermilk and back in flour mixture.
Place in hot oil and fry until golden. Oil should cover onion. When done drain well and place on plate and cut center out of onion so the petals may easily be removed.
Mix all together and serve in the middle of the onion blossom. Garnish with paprika and just a dash of red pepper.