They are out - in the thousands, possibly millions - in the supermarket, at the farmstands, perhaps hiding in your own garden. Your neighbors will place them on your doorstep in the middle of the night while you sleep. Parents will hide them in sauce. They could be riding next to you on the bus right now, and you are oblivious to the danger: TOO MANY ZUCCHINI.
|They are sleeping right now, but could jump up at any time|
Tactic #1: Get 'em while they're young. They can get to be a meter in length and then they are not only extremely dangerous if they attack, but they don't taste as good - kind of pulpy and seedy and watery. Under 10 inches and I think you are safe.
Tactic #2: Look for smooth, bright shiny skins and good color. Aliens are also green and white and yellow, so look closely before you buy, as these could also attack you at night when you try to sneak something sweet from the fridge.
Tactic #3: Store them in breathable plastic bags (like the ones they have in the produce section) or in paper so they don't get slimy. A slimy zucchini is borderline zombie, so take care.
Tactic #4: Eat them. This is THE BEST WAY to control the population. They are good cooked up with tomatoes and onions and some fresh herbs, in ratatouille, in breads or muffins, grilled with a bit of herb vinaigrette, or raw with dips or in salads. There are lots of recipes out in cyberspace where the zucchini hazard is less risky. When in doubt, chop and freeze with a "take that"!!!! You win.
I like my Mom's casserole, which is more of a souffle - light but rich, a great main with a green side, and nice for breakfast too. There are lots of great recipes out there - what are yours???
|Subdued and delicious|
ZENA'S MOM'S ZUCCHINI CASSEROLE
2 10" yellow and green zucchini, quartered lengthwise then sliced about 1/4" thick
4 large eggs
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh green pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped scallions
Steam the zucchini until just tender and set aside. Meanwhile whisk eggs in a large bowl, then whisk in mayo and parm and salt and pepper. Gently fold in zucchini, green pepper and scallions. Transfer to an 8" casserole dish sprayed first with non-stick cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees F, uncovered, for 40-45 minutes or until top is a light golden brown.