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.