How many zucchini does one family of 2 persons need, one might ask? Certainly, I should have given this a bit more consideration before eagerly raising 12 plants from seeds. I nurtured, watched and obsessed over these seedlings until I was confident they were on their way to teenage zucchini, at which point, I transferred them from their little pots into the soil which would become their breeding grounds, so to speak, to become adult zucchini. I just didn't have the heart to kill them off. I conceded by giving 4 away to good homes - which yes, left us with 8 plants.
I forgot how large and enthusiastic these plants are - beautiful yellow-orange flowers and HUGE leaves that tend to overshadow anybody near them. Bet you didn't know that you can even eat the leaves - when they are smaller, apparently. Most people (or anyone with Italian origins) knows that the flowers are also a delicacy to consume. But sorry no recipes this time for those - just the fruit themselves. And yes, zucchini actually are fruit.
The harvest has begun and within the last several weeks, we have enjoyed creamy zucchini potato soup, zucchini fritters, baked miniature zucchini frittatas, breaded zucchini sticks, zucchini muffins and cakes, stuffed zucchini, zucchini relish and a Greek zucchini pie called - wait for it - and do pronounce it phonetically - Kolokithopita .
Thought I would share some of these recipes and results for any who care. I mean, zucchini, really?? I personally hold this vegetable in very high esteem for its ability to blend in, absorb flavor, add moisture to and just generally be delicious. Not to ignore also the health benefits it brings to our various organs. According to Anthony Williams, zucchini is a highly alkaline food, easy to digest and helpful for liver hydration. The fruit provides a mild purging effect on the liver and both the intestinal tract and the gallbladder can be supported by this squash-like fruit - the phytochemicals in it reduce inflammation in the gallbladder and help push out bacteria and fungus in the intestines, so that nutrients can be better absorb and sent up to the liver. Who knew?
So think of this the next time you come across this green beauty in its many different forms.