It’s the time of year when a certain vegetable is blowing up in gardens across the country. When you begin to see these green beauties everywhere from offices to farmers’ markets and you start eating a variety of breads, cakes and skillets to try to make the most of the bounty. When you must lock your doors or otherwise risk neighbors sneaking in to leave it in your kitchen.
It is… the zucchini.
And, we had our first zucchini in the garden last week. Here I am, cradling it like a baby. (Despite what you think, I’m actually relatively normal.)
But, after a class at my local University Extension about cooking zucchini, I felt ready to tackle some new zucchini recipes. And, from this single (infant) zucchini, I shredded more than 6 cups of the veggie and got to cookin’ and bakin’. (As as aside, you can totally freeze zucchini as well, and thus ensure zucchini all winter.)
Both recipes below come from the course at the Rock Island County Extension Office. However, this zucchini also encountered a mishap with zucchini brownies. Ryan and I couldn’t eat them… they definitely didn’t taste as good as Erin’s brownies. But, the two recipes below were yummy.
For dinner, we ate zucchini fritters. They are seriously delicious. We made them as the main dish, but they’d be a great side dish.
And, for reference, my husband does not normally care for many vegetables. He is very picky about veggies and is my litmus test. If he likes it, he’s good. And, he liked this. 🙂
(Of course, it’s also fried and not very good for us. But, I figure that it’s a serving or two of veggies, so it’s getting some healthy points regardless.)
2 cups zucchini, grated or shredded
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon parsley, minced
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated (I used Monterey Jack, which worked fine)
3/4 cup Bisquick mix
1/2 cup oil
1 bunch of chopped green onions (I used white onions from the garden)
Place zucchini, eggs, salt, pepper, parsley, onions and cheese in a large bowl and mix well. Add Bisquick to bind ingredients. Heat oil in a large skillet. Drop zucchini mixture by spoonfuls in hot oil and brown on both sides (about 3 minutes per side). Drain on paper towels. Serve hot or cold.
Chocolate Zucchini Nut Bread
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups grated zucchini
2 ounces chocolate (unsweetened, melted) (but if your husband accidentally buys the wrong chocolate at the store, hypothetically, you can also sub some melted milk chocolate chips and Hershey cocoa powder)
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 cups chocolate chips
1 cup walnuts, chopped
In a large bowl, beat eggs until light, gradually add sugar, oil and vanilla. Stir in melted chocolate and zucchini. In a separate bowl, mix dry ingredients together and gradually add to the zucchini mixture. Stir in nuts and chocolate chips. Pour into 2 medium, prepared loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour or until toothpick inserted in the loaf comes out clean.
And, with that, the zucchini and I are on great terms. (I’m currently ignoring my attempt at zucchini brownies, which was inedible.) I can’t wait to try the other recipes, particularly the fried cheese blossoms.
Do you have a good recipe for zucchini?