Yes, I really am jumping for joy! I just love this time of year and picking the first of what appears to be a long squash season. On many farms this year, you will find summer squash, cousa squash,pattypans, zucchini straights and rounds again and then for Autumn-- winter squash, hubbard delicata, butternut and acorn..but that's a long way off, thank goodness. And our farmers happily bring these selections to market each week, so be sure to grab a few!
Last night I harvested the first of our summer squash and zucchini. Gave them all a bath and sliced them up. Into a saute pan they went along with some shallots, onions, fresh chard and one lone red pepper itching to be used up in the frig, along with a drizzle of olive oil--a sprinkling of fresh thyme, savory and lemon verbena and..one large dollop of herb & garlic butter.. and for good measure I tossed in 4 TBLS of homemade limoncello at the end of the cook. I was a happy camper :) The chops were grilling up nicely--the rice pilaf nearly done. A just picked fresh garden salad on the side and dinner was done. Don't you just love summer?
I guess it wouldn't officially be summer without serving something stuffed right? Okay, truthfully... I have a serious love/hate relationship with zucchini--I'll be the first to admit it. I just love it's lovely yellow blossoms. But I just hate that one plant yields so much fruit all at once--I probably serve it three times weekly around here. I love the tender nutty flavor of a four inch zucchini and how lovely it presents in many dishes with it's vibrant green color..and stuffing those gorgeous blossoms.. it's truly delicious!
Some call this vegetable boring, but truth be known zucchini is one of the many squash plants we grow, and in moderation, I seldom tire of it. This year I wanted to add to my squash patch, so we tried growing round Italian Tondo zucchini, Pattypans and Lebanese Cousa squash. They are really so sweet looking in the garden, the yield so far has been great and now I have a few new dishes of squash to stuff!
Italian Tondo Zucchini
Come on, fess up-- you know you have a gazillion of these heading into torpedodom (is this really a word?) in your garden right now. With a few simple ingredients along with a few helping hands to assist you in harvesting you can have a really satisfying squash dish to serve your family in no time. What I like the most about stuffed vegetables is that they can be served as a side dish to meat or fish or as part of an antipasto. The fillings are limitless and can be a simple breadcrumbs with herbs, or a meat filling for a more substantial meal. Use your imagination!
P.S. I'm sure you already know this, but if you should come across some of those overgrown torpedoes in your garden, haul them into the kitchen, grate them all up, allow them to drain and toss them into zip lock bags and freeze for cooler weather recipes and desserts!
Be sure ask any of our market growers for their favorite recipe and how to serve these more than plentiful summer veggies!