Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Zuke Season

Tonight's dinner menu: Baked mahi mahi garnished with Tex-Mex zucchini and zucchini ribbons, grilled zucchini, zucchini pie, and thyme garlic hasselback potatoes (fun fact: minus the olive oil, we grew all the ingredients this recipe called for!).

Dinner (On Biking Plastic Plate)

Which of these things is not like the other? Perhaps it's these adorable potatoes?

Thyme Garlic Hasselback Potatoes

Zucchini season is in full swing around here. Since this is one of my favorite vegetables, I hardly blink an eye when Mom unloads yet another basket brimming with zucchini from the garden. Dad, on the other hand, is starting to get a little sick of the green stuff...so we've been on the lookout for recipes with clever ways to use up our most bountiful ingredient (including a few baseball bats neglected zucchinis).

Garden Zucchinis

All three zucchini dishes for tonight received a thumb's up. The red-hot tex-mex zucchini that we used as a garnish was actually leftover from a side dish we didn't quite use up last night, the grilled zucchini slices are always a big hit, and the zucchini pie was surprisingly good (I am not a pie person but I loved this). My mom tells me it was more like a quiche than a pie...either way, it was wonderfully creamy and full of flavor.

Tex-Mex Zucchini Recipe
(adapted from FamilyCircle's Quick and Easy Recipes)

Mahi Mahi with Tex-Mex Zucchini and Ribboned Zucchini Garnish

(8 servings)
4 slices of bacon (we didn't have any on hand so we omitted this...but I bet it would be delicious!)
6 medium zucchini, chopped
1/2 teaspoon of onion powder
2 teaspoons of chili powder
1/4 teaspoon of ground red cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cup of salsa (we mixed 3 different kinds: one medium, one very hot, one with corn and black beans)
1 1/2 cup of shredded cheese (we decided we wished we had left this out)

If you're going to use bacon, start by cooking the bacon in a skillet until crisp.
Add the zucchinis, all spices, and salsa.
Cook for 15 minutes.
Add 1 cup of the cheese and stir.
Cook for an additional minute.
Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top.

Grilled Zucchini Recipe
Too few ingredients and instructions to making filling out a "recipe card" worthwhile.

Grilled Zucchini

Zucchini Pie Recipe*
(adapted from Sandra Garson's How To Fix A Leek cookbook)

Zucchini Pie, Minus 1 Piece

(8 servings)
4 cups of cubed zucchini
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, minced
1 small onion, peeled and diced
1/4 teaspoon of iodized salt
4 large eggs
1/2 cup of corn oil
1 teaspoon of dried oregano leaves
1 cup Bisquick (gasp! just close your eyes and do it)
1/4 cup basil leaves, chopped
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Heavily butter or oil a deep-dish 9-inch pie plate or square baking dish.
Mix everything together in a large bowl and pour it into the greased pan.
Bake for one hour at 350 degrees F, or less if using a convection oven.
Serve warm with roasted meat or grilled fish, or as a lunch entree with crusty bread and a tomato salad.
Can be reheated in a microwave.
*This is Sandra's most requested recipe ever, even though it calls for Bisquick (a pre-mixed baking product with a terrifying ingredient list).

I've seen bookmarked recipes for zucchini chocolate cake, zucchini herb cornbread, zucchini slaw, zucchini curry, zucchini ribbon salad, zucchini bread, zucchini casserole, chocolate zucchini muffins, zucchini spaghetti, crispy baked zucchini fries, and sweet zucchini pancakes. I have to say it makes me wonder...will I still be so gung-ho about zucchini two weeks from now?

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