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The Zucchini Cometh

August 5, 2010

My neighbor Ted has this to say about zucchini season: “When I was a kid, zucchini season was the only time everyone in town locked their cars. You didn’t want to come back and find a bag of zucchini on the seat.” It’s true: when they come, they come hard and fast, and even if you’ve only planted a few plants, like me, you’re basically in a fight for your life against the proliferating zucchinis for a short period of time. And, man, do they GROW. Go inside to get a glass of lemonade, come back out, and the 8-inch zucchini is now 10-inches…11…

I love the challenge of too many zucchini, and think it should be a reality show all on its own. A 1-month reality show with chefs and cooks frantically making things like fritters, sautes, stews, salads, soups, breads, muffins…ice creams…corsages…sculptures….

So far I’ve been mostly fixated on raw zucchini salads. You just use a vegetable peeler and shave the zucchini lengthwise, making transparent, long, flat strips. The basic idea is to mound them in a bowl and dress lightly. This version has a lightly spicy gingery dressing (olive oil, garlic, fresh grated ginger, lemon juice, salt and pepper and a little hot pepper flakes) and some corn, ’cause it’s pretty.

You can also take a strip and fold it attractively and put it on a crostini for a very light summery appetizer.

The broccoli? Yeah, we grew that, too.

And I’ve been throwing sliced zucchini into everything, from stir fries to pasta dishes.

Just for fun, I am contemplating an all-zucchini meal, or at least a meal where zucchini appears in every course. If I do it, you’ll hear about it. After that, lock your car doors, because I may need to divest.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. August 5, 2010 11:26 am

    I like that idea for that reality show. I would watch that. I like zucchini muffins and they withstand freezing very well.

  2. August 5, 2010 11:56 am

    Thank you so very much for all these squash ideas! I’m part of a CSA and have endless squash right now.

  3. Katie Workman, Editor-in-Chief permalink*
    August 5, 2010 1:09 pm

    I think I may may zucchini fritters tonight!

  4. Eve permalink
    August 6, 2010 9:52 am

    I love raw zuke salads too. Makes one feel so virtuous. And I love zucchini fritters. But since it is downright freezing and misty in San Francisco this summer, today I’ll be baking zucchini bread with walnuts and bittersweet chocolate shavings.

  5. Katie Workman, Editor-in-Chief permalink*
    August 6, 2010 10:59 am

    That doesn’t sound too shabby.

  6. Eve permalink
    August 6, 2010 4:56 pm

    OK, I made the bread and am eating more than my fair share right now. Here’s the recipe:
    http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/chocolate-nut-zucchini-bread.aspx
    It’s not too sweet, and has lovely green and brown flecks from the zucchini and chocolate. I skipped the nuts in hopes that the kids will help me eat this.
    For me, it’s a keeper.

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