One ingredient, many ways: Zucchini - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

One ingredient, many ways: Zucchini

Updated: June 23, 2011 03:47 PM EDT
Leek and Zucchini Galette (©Leah Koenig/Bonnier) Leek and Zucchini Galette (©Leah Koenig/Bonnier)
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  • Spicy Poached Eggs in Tomato Sauce, 8/27/14

    Spicy Poached Eggs in Tomato Sauce, 8/27/14

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 11:49 AM EDT2014-08-27 15:49:39 GMT
    Gary DukeAlley Oops4 tomatoes, chopped2 tablespoon olive oil1/2 onion, sliced thinlysalt, black pepper, crushed red pepper and garlic to taste4 eggsfresh mozzarella cheese, cubedparmesan cheesefresh basilbread slices1. In a sauce pan, cook the onions in the olive oil for a few minutes, add the tomatoes and seasoning to mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover, simmer for an additional 15 or 20 minutes.2. Uncover sauce and gentle crack the eggs evenly around your tomato sauce. Place ...More >>
    Gary DukeAlley Oops4 tomatoes, chopped2 tablespoon olive oil1/2 onion, sliced thinlysalt, black pepper, crushed red pepper and garlic to taste4 eggsfresh mozzarella cheese, cubedparmesan cheesefresh basilbread slices1. In a sauce pan, cook the onions in the olive oil for a few minutes, add the tomatoes and seasoning to mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover, simmer for an additional 15 or 20 minutes.2. Uncover sauce and gentle crack the eggs evenly around your tomato sauce. Place ...More >>
  • Summer Shrimp Salad, 8/25/14

    Summer Shrimp Salad, 8/25/14

    Monday, August 25 2014 8:49 AM EDT2014-08-25 12:49:13 GMT
    Capi PeckTrio'sServes 41 1/4 lbs. large Gulf shrimp in the shell2 ears corn on the cobs, steamed, grilled or roasted/ kernels removedFor the dressing:2 cloves garlic, smashed1 1/2 t. cumin1 t. paprika1/2 t. cayenne pepper1/2 c. lime juice1c. olive oil1/2 c. cilantro leavessalt to tasteCombine all dressing ingredients in bowl or jar. Whisk or shake well to combine. Set aside.2 Haas avocados, sliced1/2 c. cilantro leaves8 cups arugula or other greens of your choice?1 half Vidalia or sweet onion...More >>
    Capi PeckTrio'sServes 41 1/4 lbs. large Gulf shrimp in the shell2 ears corn on the cobs, steamed, grilled or roasted/ kernels removedFor the dressing:2 cloves garlic, smashed1 1/2 t. cumin1 t. paprika1/2 t. cayenne pepper1/2 c. lime juice1c. olive oil1/2 c. cilantro leavessalt to tasteCombine all dressing ingredients in bowl or jar. Whisk or shake well to combine. Set aside.2 Haas avocados, sliced1/2 c. cilantro leaves8 cups arugula or other greens of your choice?1 half Vidalia or sweet onion...More >>
  • Tuscan Grilled Chicken Pasta, 8/22/14

    Tuscan Grilled Chicken Pasta, 8/22/14

    Friday, August 22 2014 12:20 PM EDT2014-08-22 16:20:29 GMT
    Brandon DouglasServes 4· ½ cup grilled Chicken· 5 slices Salami· ½ cup sliced Grape tomato· ½ cup Spinach rough chop· 2 cups uncooked small pasta shells, orzo or macaroni· 3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced· ¼ cup olive Oil or butter· 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese· 2 tablespoons fresh basil chiffonade· 1/4 teaspoon salt· 1/8 teaspoon fresh cracked pepperDirections1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, saute garlic in olive oil. Remove from the heat. Drain pa...More >>
    Brandon DouglasServes 4· ½ cup grilled Chicken· 5 slices Salami· ½ cup sliced Grape tomato· ½ cup Spinach rough chop· 2 cups uncooked small pasta shells, orzo or macaroni· 3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced· ¼ cup olive Oil or butter· 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese· 2 tablespoons fresh basil chiffonade· 1/4 teaspoon salt· 1/8 teaspoon fresh cracked pepperDirections1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, saute garlic in olive oil. Remove from the heat. Drain pa...More >>


By Leah Koenig

Like baseball games and backyard barbecues, the zucchini is a permanent fixture of summer. Well-known to home gardeners as the plant that keeps on giving, zucchini are first harvested in early summer and continue to grow prolifically until the first frost. Come mid-July, it is not uncommon to find an overwhelmed gardener sneaking bags full of the cylindrical squash onto their neighbor's front porch.

Considering its current ubiquity in American cooking, the zucchini entered this country's culinary consciousness only recently. All squash were originally New World plants, cultivated in Central and South America as early as 7,000 BCE. The French and Spanish explorers, who originally mistook the indigenous squash they discovered as a variety of melon, helped introduce pumpkins and other varieties of squash to Europe by the early 1500s. Italian farmers are credited for developing the modern zucchini from an heirloom variety brought to Europe sometime in the early-1800s. A century later, Italian immigrants arriving in America brought their beloved zucchino (literally "little gourd") back across the Atlantic. Zucchini caught on quickly; by 1941, an issue of Good Housekeeping informed readers that, "If you haven't [yet] tried zucchini (Italian Green Squash), you've missed a lot."

Today, zucchini -- both the green variety and its golden-skinned cousin -- are supermarket staples. And as summer begins to heat up, the tables at the farmers' market grow heavy with them -- first with delicate, egg yolk-orange zucchini blossoms, followed by small, tender fruits that soon grow to resemble huge, caveman-style clubs.

Like all summer squash varieties, zucchinis have tender, edible skin and buttery flesh. They can be baked, roasted, grilled, steamed or deep-fried, and their high water concentration adds moisture to cakes and quick breads. When buying zucchini, remember that taste typically follows size. For cooked preparations, choose smaller, more flavorful fruits. But when sheer bulk is key, as in baking, the larger, comparatively tasteless zucchinis work just fine. The recipes below celebrate the zucchini's culinary range, offering enough diversity to keep the "little gourd" interesting all summer long.

SWEET

Chocolate Zucchini Cake
Grated zucchini all but disappears in this dark chocolate cake, but helps create an extra moist crumb.

Food52: Zucchini Lemon Cookies
These golden, sweet-tart cookies come beautifully dotted with flecks of bright green.

SAVORY

Leek and Zucchini Galette (pictured above)
This rustic summer galette is brightened by a dollop of lemon-scented ricotta.

Marinated Zucchini
Garlic and red wine vinegar soften and add depth of flavor to the zucchini in this deeply satisfying side dish.

Zucchini and Pasta Sandwich
Caramelized zucchini and pecorino-topped pasta make a surprisingly sublime sandwich filling.

Squash Blossom Beignets
Squash blossom season is short, so make these delicate, fried treats while you can.  They are so good you might just end up eating them straight from the frying pan.  

Zucchini Pie
This custard-rich, egg and zucchini pie is topped with a flaky phyllo dough crust.

NY Times: Zucchini Pasta
Ultra-thin slices of zucchini stand in for fettuccine in this summery pasta dish.

DRINK

Nola.comZucchini Tini
Zucchini's vegetal flavor perfectly offsets sake and gin in this zesty martini.

GourmetZucchini Lime Tequila Slushies
Zucchinis are packed with water, making them the ideal base for this refreshing, summer drink.

Leah Koenig is a freelance writer and author of The Hadassah Everyday Cookbook: Daily Meals for the Contemporary Jewish Kitchen (Rizzoli, 2011).

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