As any vegetable gardener or farmer knows, at this time of year, it can seem as if the zucchinis are never ending! With all of the sunshine, they often grow so fast that they need to be harvested every 2-3 days, and even so, each harvest yields a few giants.
If you visit our market stall, you’ll find lots of zucchini of all sizes there, and to help you with the dilemma of what to do with them, here are some of our favourite zucchini uses.
One of the easiest ways to use large zucchinis is to grill them. Here is a Rootdown farm favourite:
- Start with thick slices of zucchini – for a firmer zucchini, try the Romanesco variety, which stays firm when cooked
- In a bowl, mix olive oil, nutritional yeast, salt and pepper into a paste
- Brush onto both sides of each slice of zucchini
- Grill on bbq or in the oven
A popular use of giant zucchinis because the zucchini can be grated and frozen into zucchini bread portions to be used throughout the winter. This recipe is from the cookbook How It All Vegan! by Tanya Barnard and Sarah Kramer, and is a popular morning snack at Rootdown.
Preheat oven to 350ᵒ.
- 1 ½ cups flour
- 2 tsp baking powder½ tsp salt
- 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
- 1 egg or egg replacer equivalent
- ½ cup sweetener
- 1/3 cup oil
- 1 tsp vinegar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups zucchini, grated
- ½ cup chocolate chips or raisins
- ½ cup nuts, chopped (optional)
- ¼ cup water (if needed)
Sift together dry ingredients. Add egg, sweetener, oil, vinegar, vanilla, and mix. Stir in zucchini and other ingredients until “just mixed.” Add a little water if dough seems too dry. Spoon into lightly oiled loaf pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes.
This vegan version has added tasty protein.
- Grate zucchini and place in colander. Add salt and leave for at least 30 min to allow water to drain out.
- Boil yellow or orange lentils until ready to eat.
- Mix together zucchini, lentils,1/2 cup flour, and spices (suggested: salt, pepper, thyme, sage; alternatively, try indian spices)
- Heat oil, and drop in balls of the batter. Flatten and fry to the desired consistency.
Summer Stir Fry
A simple but tasty dish. Slice zucchini thickly and add near the end to avoid mushiness.
- chop a variety of in-season veggies, such as carrots, spring onions, garlic (or scapes), zucchini/summer squash, beans, peas, broccoli, kale.
- Stir fry in a small amount of oil, or water, starting with the firmer veggies such as carrots, and adding the softer ones closer to the end.
- Flavour with a simple sauce of soy sauce, mirin or sweet vinegar, sesame oil and chilis, or any other favourite sauce.
- Serve with rice or noodes.
Raw Vegan Spaghetti
For a gluten-free, raw, vegan version of pasta, try zucchini noodles, a great way to use large zucchinis. See this Steamy Kitchen recipe.
For other recipes and suggestions for using summer squash and zucchini, see this page from Bon Appetit.