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Zucchini

zucchini

Did you know 'zucchini' is actually the Italian word for this prolific summer

squash?  If you ever happen to be in the UK or France, you can expect the

same vegetable to be called 'courgette'.  Whatever you call it, this delicious

and versatile vegetable has become a favorite worldwide after their humble

beginnings in the Americas.  It is low in calories and is a good source of folate,

dietary fiber, potassium, vitamin A and C, copper, and manganese.  Most

of the nutrients are concentrated in the glossy green rind, so try to keep it in

tact, rather than peeling it away, to derive the most health benefits.

 

 

Grilled Savory Zucchini Flatbread

1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for brushing

1 premade or store-bought pizza dough

All-purpose flour, for dusting

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

2 small zucchini, cut crosswise on a bias 1/8-inch thick

3 shallots, thinly sliced

 

Preheat grill over medium-high heat.

 

Oil barbeque grill topper or a baking sheet tray. With your hands work the dough ball out onto a lightly floured surface into a rectangular shape about 1-inch thick. Shape doesn't have to be perfect. Place dough on lined baking sheet. Brush with some olive oil, then sprinkle top with grated Parmesan. Place 1 row of zucchini rounds along 1 side of dough. Working in and along side of the zucchini arrange 1 row of shallots followed by another row zucchini. With your fingertips gently press vegetables into the dough. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Place on preheated grill and cook for about 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown and crispy. Remove from grill, cut and serve warm.

 

 

Ratatouille

1/4 cup olive oil

2 onions, slivered

3 bell peppers, cut into one inch squares(try different colors)

2 eggplants, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

2 zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

4 cloves garlic, minced or crushed

2 pounds tomatoes, chopped

1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme

salt and pepper

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

 

Heat olive oil in a heavy soup pot on medium heat. Sliver onions and add to oil.  While the onions cook, chop the bell peppers and add them to the pot, stirring well.  Chop the eggplants and add to the pot, stirring well to coat the eggplant with oil. At this point all the olive oil will have soaked into the eggplant, so you need to stir often to keep things from burning until they soften some.  Chop the zucchini and stir it in once the eggplant has softened a bit.  Chop the garlic and add to the vegetables, stirring well.   Chop the tomatoes and add them.   Mince the thyme and add it along with salt and pepper to taste. Stir well and cook two minutes.

 

Turn down heat and cover the pot. Simmer until everything is soft and well blended - about 40 minutes.  Stir in basil and remove from heat.

 

 

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

1/2 cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) butter

1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) vegetable oil

1 3/4 cups (12 1/4 ounces) granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1/2 cup (4 ounces) sour cream, buttermilk, or yogurt

2 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

3/4 cup (2 1/4 ounce) Dutch-process cocoa

2 teaspoons espresso powder, optional but tasty

2 cups shredded zucchini (about one 10" zucchini, about 12 ounces)

1/2 cup (3 ounces) chocolate chips

 

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Lighlty grease a 9" x 13" pan.

 

In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, oil, sugar, vanilla, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Beat in the eggs.

 

Stir in the sour cream, buttermilk, or yogurt alternately with the flour. Then add the cocoa and espresso powder, mixing till smooth. Finally, fold in the zucchini and 1/2 cup chocolate chips.

 

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake the cake for 30 to 35 minutes, till the top springs back lightly when touched, and it seems set. Slide the cake out of the oven, sprinkle it evenly with the 1 cup chocolate chips, and return it to the oven for 5 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven, let cool, and frost, if desired.

 

 

 

 

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