Zucchini 101

The question, “What do I do with these zucchini?” We have enjoyed frying the flowers, however the fruit itself is like rabbits, they multiply! So what are the possibilities; a marinara sauce with zucchini or a white sauce which also plays as a side dish, a parmigiana of zucchini, a sweet cake or as some call it a bread made with zucchini, light cheesy fritters or a salad called Poverella from Puglia. This salad as well as the fritters were a staple made in the summer by my mother-in-law. Poverella is thinly sliced zucchini and garlic fried in large shallow saute’ pan until lightly browned. Remove from heat add two tablespoons of white vinegar, balsamic or wine,  along with four to five sprigs of mint finely chopped and of course salt and pepper to taste. In my research I found that in Puglia the sliced zucchini is placed in the sun for a few hours before cooking. It was also suggested that you can leave the sliced zucchini in a tray covered with a paper towel overnight before cooking. These methods are said to intensify the flavor of the Poverella. My mother-in-law did not use these methods but I am going to give it a try. She also made many a light fritter with grated zucchini salted and place in a tea towel to capture the water to dry the zucchini. One medium zucchini grated was added to two beaten eggs, a teaspoon of baking powder, with a 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese and a pinch of black pepper. A large saute’ pan with olive oil was heated to medium high. Using a large serving spoon she would place three to four spoonfuls into the hot oil. Fry each fritter until, golden brown on each side then remove and place on a paper towel; salt each lightly. They are gluten free, light and delicious!

Barclay Farm, NJ

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