Q. Why do country people lock their cars?
A. So their neighbours won’t leave zucchinis in them.
If you don’t have an excess of zucchinis, but would like one, I find Black Jack variety to be the best. I grow from seeds, because it is cheaper and you do not want to grow more than two plants unless you are feeding an army! Honestly, from two plants so far we have had about 15kgs of produce. And that is with us cutting them off to prevent even more…
Plant seeds as the weather starts to warm up. Protect the young seedlings from being eaten with either a ‘mini greenhouse’ (aka a plastic bottle with the top cut off and turned upside down over the area) in cooler weather, or in hotter weather, cut the top and bottom off to create a ‘cuff’ that goes around it. Remove the bottle once the plant is out of the danger zone as it will rapidly outgrow it.
The zucchinis (or courgettes) for sale in fruit shops are just tiny specimens of the giant triffid-like marrows they will become if left unwatched for a couple of days. I think they are just as yummy big as small.
There are lots of recipes out there, here are a couple of my ideas to add to the fray…it’s amazing where you can stick zucchinis with nobody noticing…*ahem*…!
Most people don’t own a spiraliser with which to make ‘zoodles’…zucchini noodles. Quicker and easier, instead grab a big zuc and run your $2 vegetable peeler fast up and down its length… you can have ‘fettucchini’ instead! Serve chilled with a chilled raw tomato and herb sauce on those hot days.
You can also use this fettucchini in place of papaya in ‘som tum’ -thai green papaya salad. To make vegan som tum just leave out the fish sauce and use soy sauce instead. If you want to be really fancy buy some vegan anchovies to sprinkle over the top from Vincent Vegetarian in Footscray.
It is also perfect in fresh Vietnamese spring rolls. The best wrappers I have found are the ones with the rose on the or the horse. I didn’t like the Erawan ones from the supermarket at all, though that was a while ago and they may have changed the formula. Dip in super hot water until just soft then use immediately. I put my frying pan full of hot water on the stove and use that.
And of course, just add it to any salad you like.
Don’t add water to your cooking, add zwater!!
Liquefy zucchini then add it in place of liquid in cooking…even in cakes…just say it is green tea flavour if anyone asks and you will sound really cool. You can even add some green tea ‘matcha’ powder if you believe in truth in advertising…
I made green lasagne…mozzarella recipe from here, but using zwater instead.(Mozzuchrella is cooking in pan in pic above). The tomato sauce was made from zwater and tomato paste blended with herbs and garlic. Finally the lasagne sheets were replaced with microwaved zucchini slices. In between i layers red caps, eggplant and sweet potato all done on the sandwich press. There was no need to bake in oven, I just heated up individual serves when ready to eat.
I also made seitan, very loosely following this recipe, but of course using magic zwater blended with stock powder in place of the broth and water. Seitan is a 2000 year old concept which result in ‘wheat meat’.
Sun dry them
Slice thinly, sprinkle with salt and put out in the sun, preferably under glass. Grease-proof paper will prove to be your friend here. I am using racks from the oven under our coffee table and gutter guard under the drying table.
Ensure they are COMPLETELY dry then store in airtight containers for use later in winter soups.
…and last, but not least…
Give them away
If you can! Hopefully these tips will help make re-homing easier!
(As always, these are ideas only, please ensure that you are happy with the safety of preserved food before you consume it.)