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Selecting and Preparing Zucchini Squash

In Season: Zucchini

We've been giving a lot of attention to berries, tomatoes, and corn this Summer, but that doesn't mean we've overlooked other vegetables at their peak. Case in point: zucchini, the slender Summer vegetable that's in abundance between May and August. Find out what we do with it when you read more.

The zucchini (also known as a courgette) often gets mistaken for cucumber, but in fact it's a type of squash — Summer squash, to be exact. Unlike its Winter counterparts, this squash is fragile in both texture and flavor, with a thin, soft skin that's edible. Although the flowers are often removed, some farmers markets will sell courgettes with the blossoms still attached; these blooms can be edible, too. When selecting, choose firm, smaller, blemish-free zucchini, and store them in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Zucchini has a very mild flavor that's a little sweet, a little bitter, and vegetal all at the same time. Its less-than-crunchy texture and high water content mean it shouldn't be cooked too long. Here are a few ways to prepare your produce:

How do you enjoy zucchini?

Source: Flickr User ljcybergal

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lovesitc1 lovesitc1 5 years
I make a low carb zucchini pancake by shredding, salting, and draining my zukes. Then sauteing it in a cast-iron skillet. Let it get nicely browned, flip it, and add fresh tarragon to it. An amazing combination of flavors!!!! LOVE THIS!!!! Especially since most zucchini pancakes are so laden with eggs and flour. This one is simply zukes and fresh tarragon. Delish!!!
prencesschris prencesschris 6 years
i love zucchini bread
GummiBears GummiBears 6 years
Those blossom looks beautiful. I like zucchini myself but I need some ideas on how to eat them. I am tired of making the same boring dish and I am not crazy about it in breads. Off to do a search I go.
Spectra Spectra 6 years
I just saute it or steam it, usually. I also like it in bread or muffins, but I plan to make zucchini pickles and zucchini pancakes this year.
AmberHoney AmberHoney 6 years
Zucchini pickles, zuc and pear bread w/candied ginger, shredded and froze 20 cups, zucchini quiche, grilled some along with my eggplant and made lasagna with very cheesy white sauce. I could go and on but I'll spare everyone. Love the picture also! And yes, they do grow overnight into large zuc clubs - I could hurt you with it! :) I should also mention it hurts like the dickens when you go pickens; I get huge welts on my arms and legs and itch till the end of time. There are also recipe sites dedicated to just zucs and cucumbers; yes I'm overrun with cucs also. I planted the Japanese ones and they are quite tasty.
bluebellknoll bluebellknoll 6 years
I love this pic! I didn't plant any this year and I miss not having any gigantic, mutant zucchini growing in my garden. ;)
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