Best use of zucchini

I think anyone who has ever planted zucchini gets to the point of saying “now what do I do with zucchini?”  One year I made zucchini pancakes.  We ate those all summer and I froze enough to eat them all winter also and then I never wanted to see another one.  I ate them with butter, maple syrup, peanut butter, jelly — you name it I tried them any way I could think of but they still had no real flavor of their own.  We have boiled it, baked it, fried it and it still tastes like zucchini.  Norman likes it fried with lots of cheese but then even an old shoe tastes good with lots of cheese as long as you could chew it.  So to me that is no solution, I can take only so much cheese and too much of anything is not good for you.  One year I turned all my zucchini into zucchini bread and tho that was good it could not compare to banana bread and eating much of that really put on the weight which I have fought since high school.  Well this year I found a new way to serve it.  It started by stuffing a large zucchini, I like stuffed zucchini pretty good but did not want a bread stuffing because of the extra calories so I used Swiss Chard instead.  Swiss Chard is another one of the vegetables that you wind up with too much of and I am not very fond of that either so when I cook it Norman has to eat it all.  I take a “no thank you” serving at best.  He loves any greens fried.  Well that dish came out great and the next zucchini I sliced the small ones to use on pizza, the family didn’t come so I have a very large dish full of thinly sliced zucchini and no place to use it so I put the sliced zucchini in the bottom of my casserole dish added the broccoli flowerllets that I had cooked for the pizza a little salt and pepper, some chopped parsley and some chopped basil leaves on top of that and then a thin layer of grated  mozzarella cheese.  Set that aside and made the stuffing.  In a large frying pan I sautéed a couple garlic cloves well chopped, a half cup of chopped onions and half a cup of green peppers.  Then added 4 cups of chopped Swiss Chard and fried all that together.  At the end I added a little white wine quarter cup of chopped ham and a little cheddar cheese.  This I put onto of the zucchini topped it with half cup of grated cheddar cheese and baked it for 40 minutes in a 350 degree oven and Norman loved it and even I loved it, I who don’t like greens of any kind find I eat my share of any greens put in this recipe.  I have made it several times this month and each time it is different because I put in different thing  depending on what I have left over on hanging around.  The zucchini is always the same as is the cheese, ham and onions- spices are pretty much the same each day but once in a while I put in some ground thyme or rosemary.  Today I topped the zucchini with sliced mushrooms that I had left over from the pizza we had yesterday.   Some times I use bell peppers and sometimes sweet Italian Peppers.  If you like it spicier use a hot pepper minced.  The greens vary from Swiss Chard, to beet greens or spinach.  Those are the ones we like best but any greens would do and the amount of cheese varies according to how I feel.  Norman loves it when I put in too much but I don’t – it is too heavy.  I always make enough to go for two meals as I have a “little dipper” which is three small crock pots that hold about 1 and 1/2 cups and heats everything up with out changing the flavor, that way I don’t have to cook it every day.  We are finding you can vary it in many ways just by adding what ever is handy.  Do try it, it is a wonderful way to use up those extra zucchini.

Yesterday Joe and family came up for a visit and we had pizza.  They have a title dog who just loves to visit here.  She starts to cry as soon as they turn into Martin Road and by the time they hit Raccoon Trail she is beside herself with excitement.  They always keep her on a leash as she loves to run and they have to chase her so she doesn’t go to the neighbors and get into trouble with their big dogs.  We tried to tell them if no one chased her, she would not go so far away but it is hard to see your little dog disappear into the woods and hear the other dogs in the distance barking.  Well yesterday just as they got into the house Joe went back to the car for something he forgot and Sally scooted out the door between his feet.  She took off up the hill toward Ken’s place to say hi to Ken’s dog ,Lady.  She was running just as fast as she could go.  Joe thought of chasing her but was so tired from the 2 and a half hour drive to get here, he just said I’ll go up later and get her.  Well, when Sally  didn’t see anyone chasing her, she paused and looked down the hill.  When she saw Joe walking in the other direction, going toward the lower garden- Sally turned and came running back past the house.  She was going so fast her little body was right out straight flying with all four legs off the ground.  She hopped more than ran.  Joe said “hi” as she flew past but didn’t chase her.  She ran to the lower garden, turned around and come back up by way of the woodland path.  By now she was bouncing like a jack rabbit and trying every different path back to the house she could find.  No one chased her, they were all laughing too much to move.  When they finally called to her, she came back to the house and they caught her and we all came in for dinner.   After dinner we went to the lower garden and picked vegetables for Joe and Holly to take home, Sally ran free and stayed pretty close but ran all over the yard until finally she came back to Bubba and just fell at his feet all tuckered out.  Bubba carried her up to the house and gave her a drink of water.  By then it was time to pack up the car and head for home.  Sally didn’t want to go but after some nudging she got into the car and we all said good-bye.  We all had a great visit but no one enjoyed it as much as Sally did.  How could anyone be that happy!!

Today we have taken it easy and just did house work.  Monday is always washing and changing the beds so except for cooking dinner and washing we just relaxed and enjoyed the showers. Of course Norman has to poke around and cut a little brush and clean every conner he can find.   Tomorrow we will be back to the gardens and pick beans, raspberries and black berries as they are getting ready now.  Have a great day.

About Carol (Ouma) Petts

I am a retired teacher. I have taught all levels from kindergarten through college and have been retired now for over 20 years. The last ten years we have lived on a farm and lived off the land, growing our own food and canning for our extended family. Now we have sold the farm and are moving to Florida to truly retire. I guess I have always had a short attention span as this is our 11th move. We have moved from a small farm in New Hampshire, to more city type living, small business adventures, focusing more on traveling, Florida living, Georgia, and Tennessee farming and now back to Florida. My blog is a way to keep my children up to date on what I am doing and letting them know I am still alive and well. My children are spread across the country from New England to Florida, Nova Scotia to New Mexico and CA and several places between, They let me know what they are up to by commenting on my blog but they are so busy with their own lives most times I have to assume " no news is good news". Now I are starting on a new adventure so will try to give daily updates until we get settled into a routine. Then I know even if I am getting older and should settle down I will start looking for some new and exciting adventure to start. Welcome aboard. Norman died Oct 30, 2017 so I am continuing the journey alone with the aid of my children, grand children and great grand children. At present I am living with my daughter and we are 7 in one house and cover four generations. We range in age from 7 to 85 and are finding common ground, we are living proof that multi generations can live and function in a three bedroom house if they really want to. Soon my grandson will have his house built next door so we all will have a room of their own except for the seven year old twins who by choice will share a room.
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1 Response to Best use of zucchini

  1. Rosemary Rafuse says:

    No zucchini in our garden! Our potatoes are coming up! Yesterday there were 14 plants and today 45! There is hope of a crop now. There is supposed to be two weeks on sunny weather to come. The hay will get made and the gardens will grow!

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