Zucchini Baby


Saskia EsslingerI was checking on the garden during a brief respite from the August rains when I suddenly noticed a gigantic zucchini as big as a baby. How in the world did he grow so big without me noticing? He looked cold and wet so I cut his cord and wrapped him in a blanket. I named him Oscar. He was the best baby. Always calm and quiet and never needed food or a diaper change.

Giant zucchini

I hope you won’t think me barbaric, but eventually we ate him. Because he was a zucchini after all. You may have a zucchini baby yourself, or perhaps you forgot to lock your car and someone stuffed it full of zucchini. And what exactly do you do with 13 pounds of zucchini? Plus all his baby brothers and sisters that seem to grow faster than you can possibly eat them?

We all know that small zucchini are more tender and delicious, but that doesn’t mean we need to compost the overgrown ones. If the seeds are quite large and developed you can cut them out like you are seeding a cucumber. Grate the rest of the flesh in your food processor to make quick work of it. Now it is all set to go into all sorts of dishes.

This week I made zucchini bread, zucchini chocolate coconut cake, zucchini corn tacos and added some shredded zucchini to tomato sauce for lasagna. The shreds virtually disappear into the background, but they still offer added vitamins and fiber. I’ve added shredded zucchini to muffins, pesto pasta, soup, stews, and any kind of casserole or gratin or frittata. What you can’t seem to sneak in somewhere, put it in a zippered freezer bag and stick it in the freezer for mid-winter nutritional boosts.


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