friday feast: Z is for zucchini

  Alex Gee/flickr


It’s August, unbearably HOT, and I must confess something.

I miss running from zucchini.

Once upon a time, when we lived at our old house and Len had his famous vegetable garden, there’d always come a time when monster zucchini would appear out of nowhere and chase us around the back yard.

By then, we’d had our fill of their smaller relatives. After grilling, grating, slicing, and chopping zucchini for salads, breads, fritters, and frittata, Len usually tried to unload a few of the giants on our neighbors, who by then had taken to hiding guiltlessly behind closed curtains and blinds. But who could blame them? Big zucchini just doesn’t taste good — they’re stringy and full of yucky seeds.


Spiced Zucchini Soup by chotda.

But now, living in the woods, we don’t have a garden. Lots of space, but not enough sun. So we’ve been eating zucchini moderately and modestly, purchasing them now and again from Whole Foods or the farm market. And somehow, it’s just not the same. Where’s the excitement? Where’s all the angst and undue pressure to keep up with the crop?

      photo credit: flickr

Still, a good zucchini poem makes me feel better.


by Marge Piercy

And thus the people every year
in the valley of humid July
did sacrifice themselves
to the long green phallic god
and eat and eat and eat.
They’re coming, they’re on us,
the long striped gourds, the silky
babies, the hairy adolescents,
the lumpy vast adults
like the trunks of green elephants.
Recite fifty zucchini recipes!

Zucchini tempura; creamed soup;
sauté with olive oil and cumin,
tomatoes, onion; frittata;
casserole of lamb; baked
topped with cheese; marinated;
stuffed; stewed; driven
through the heart like a stake.

Get rid of old friends: they too
have gardens and full trunks.
Look for newcomers: befriend
them in the post office, unload
on them and run. Stop tourists
in the street. Take truckloads
to Boston. Give to your Red Cross.
Beg on the highway: please
take my zucchini, I have a crippled
mother at home with heartburn.

(Rest is here.)

I’ve never had round zucchini! Looks good! (steph noble)

What’s your favorite way to eat zucchini? (I loved calling them courgettes when we lived in England.) I like them fried in egg and flour batter, grilled with olive oil, and in chocolate zucchini bread (remember this fun post from last year?). And, more recently, I like them in Pasta Puttanesca.

If you have a favorite recipe, please share!

by quilting mick/michelle

Zsofi at the Stenhouse Blog is our Poetry Friday host this week. Do you think she likes long green vegetables?

Zucchini Spice cupcake by Eat My Cupcake/flickr.

Copyright © 2010 Jama Rattigan of jama rattigan’s alphabet soup. All rights reserved.